Mindfulness training for smoking cessation: Results from a randomized controlled trial

Categories Research

Intro:

This is the first study comparing mindfulness training to gold-standard treatment for smoking cessation. Four months after treatment mindfulness was found to be 5x better at helping people quit smoking.

 

Abstract (Brewer 2011)

Background:

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the world, and long-term abstinence rates remain modest. Mindfulness training (MT) has begun to show benefits in a number of psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety and more recently, in addictions. However, MT has not been evaluated for smoking cessation through randomized clinical trials.

 

Methods:

88 treatment-seeking, nicotine-dependent adults who were smoking an average of 20 cigarettes/day were randomly assigned to receive MT or the American Lung Association’s freedom from smoking (FFS) treatment. Both treatments were delivered twice weekly over 4 weeks (eight sessions total) in a group format. The primary outcomes were expired-air carbon monoxide-confirmed 7-day point prevalence abstinence and number of cigarettes/day at the end of the 4-week treatment and at a follow-up interview at week 17.

 

Results:

88% of individuals received MT and 84% of individuals received FFS completed treatment. Compared to those randomized to the FFS intervention, individuals who received MT showed a greater rate of reduction in cigarette use during treatment and maintained these gains during follow-up (F = 11.11, p = .001). They also exhibited a trend toward greater point prevalence abstinence rate at the end of treatment (36% vs. 15%, p = .063), which was significant at the 17-week follow-up (31% vs. 6%, p = .012).

 

Conclusions:

This initial trial of mindfulness training may confer benefits greater than those associated with current standard treatments for smoking cessation.

Reference:

Brewer, J. A., S. Mallik, T. A. Babuscio, C. Nich, H. E. Johnson, C. M. Deleone, C. A. Minnix-Cotton, S. Byrne, H. Kober, A. Weinstein, K. M. Carroll, B. J. Rounsaville. (2011) Drug and Alcohol Dependence 119: 72-80.

 

View all of Dr. Jud’s research on Google Scholar.

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