News / Vancouver

Men quit smoking differently than women: UBC researchers

Men really are from Mars and women from Venus, at least when it comes to quitting smoking.

That’s the latest finding from University of B.C. researchers who teamed up with the B.C. Lung Association to develop a new quit-smoking website tailored for men.

QuitNowMen.ca aims to arm men with straightforward, easy-to-access information that allows them to take a “self-directed approach” to quitting smoking, said website manager Jon Schmidt.

He said the idea for a new website for men came about after the BC Lung Association found fewer men were using their previous website, which was colourful and provided services that seemed to be more appealing to women.

Researchers at UBC ran focus groups in Vancouver, Kelowna and Kamloops and found that men tend to have different reasons and strategies for quitting smoking compared to women, said Joan Bottorff, a nursing professor director of the Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention.

The researchers found that men prefer to be “somewhat independent” when trying to quit smoking instead of being told what to do, said Bottorff.

“If you think about masculinity and the way men do things, they like to figure things out on their own,” said Bottorff. “They want some advice, but they also want to quit smoking on their own terms.”

As far as the researchers are aware, she said the new website is the first time a smoking cessation tool has been developed specifically for men.

This week, the BC Lung Association is also holding a “quit and win” contest to motivate men to quite smoking. Participants have a chance to win one of two $2,500 cash prizes.

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