Background It is not clear whether the availability of tobacco affects the likelihood of smoking cessation. We examined whether the proximity to a tobacco store and the number of stores were associated with smoking cessation, and compared results for proximity variables based on walking and straight-line (as the crow flies) distance.
Methods The study population consisted of 8751 baseline smokers from the Finnish Public Sector study in 1997–2005. Smoking intensity (cigarettes/day) was determined at baseline and smoking cessation was determined from a follow-up survey in 2008–2009. Proximity was measured using straight-line and walking distance from home to the nearest tobacco store, and another exposure variable was the number of stores within 0.50 km from home. We calculated associations with log-binomial regression models, adjusting for individual-level and area-level confounders.
Results Of the participants, 3482 (39.8%) quit smoking during the follow-up (mean follow-up 5.5 years, SD 2.3 years). Among men who were moderate/heavy smokers at baseline and lived <0.50 km walking distance from the nearest tobacco store, the likelihood of smoking cessation was 27% (95% CI 12% to 40%) lower compared with those living ≥0.50 km from a store. Having even one store within 0.50 km walking distance from home decreased cessation in men who were moderate/heavy smokers by 37% (95% CI 19% to 51%). No decrease was found for men who were light smokers at baseline or for women.
Conclusions Living within walking distance of a tobacco store reduced the likelihood of smoking cessation among men who were moderate/heavy smokers.
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.