Study Finds Text-Based Anti-Smoking Treatment Effective

August 21, 2014

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article. 

1. cessation /sɛˈseɪ ʃən/ (n.) – the act of temporarily or permanently stopping an activity or process
Example: The economic crisis led to the cessation of cigarette production.

2. vice /vaɪs/ (n.) – habit that is unhealthy or immoral
Example: The most common vices among men include cigarette smoking and alcohol drinking.

3. randomly /ræn dəmli/ (adv.) – in a non-systematic and non-specific way
Example: The researchers randomly picked the participants by drawing lots.

4. totally /ˈtoʊt l i/ (adv.) – in a complete and full way
Example: The patient’s cigarette addiction was totally eliminated after several treatments.

5. rack up /ræk ʌp/ (phrasal v.) – to gather or collect a huge amount of something
Example: The program racked up several positive reviews.


Read the text below.
According to research, using a text-based smoking cessation program may have a higher success rate than using self-help materials.

According to the researchers, the program called “Text2Quit” [tekst-too-kwit] helped heavy smokers to stop their vice. One can participate in the therapy by signing up on Text2Quit’s website. Once subscribed, users can receive reminders, tips, and encouraging messages to help them avoid the urge to smoke. Also, users can exchange text messages with Text2Quit representatives.

The study was conducted by researchers from George Washington University, who gathered 503 smokers for the research. The team randomly assigned the participants to two smoking cessation programs: one group used the Text2Quit program while another used self-help materials. The study lasted for six months and the participants were advised to avoid smoking until the experiment was finished.

Results revealed that 11 percent of the smokers assigned to the Text2Quit group were able to stay away from smoking for the duration of the study. On the other hand, only five percent of the self-help material users were able to stop smoking for six months.

The findings suggest that the percentage of quitters from the self-help group is doubled in Text2Quit. This means that subscribing to the text-based recovery program appears to be more effective than reading self-help materials.

However, study co-author Lorien Abroms [LAWR-ee-uhn AB-rohms] said that further studies are still needed to confirm these findings. Nonetheless, she believes that Text2Quit is a great tool to help smokers totally quit the habit. 

The Text2Quit program was released in 2012 and now has racked up an estimated 120,000 subscribers.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.  

Discussion A

·         Why do you think Text2Quit had a higher success rate than the self-help materials?
·         Would you like Text2Quit to be available in your country? Why or why not?

Discussion B

·         What do you think are other ways to help individuals stop smoking? Kindly discuss.
·         What laws in your country prohibit cigarette smoking?

August 21, 2014