Hypnosis Works Better for Male Smokers Trying to Quit

Therapy helps 30% of men and only 23% of women, study finds

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FRIDAY, July 30, 2004 (HealthDayNews) -- Men are more likely than women to have success using hypnosis to quit smoking, says an Ohio State University report.

Researchers reviewed 18 studies of hypnosis-based smoking-cessation programs and found this approach was successful for about 30 percent of men, compared to 23 percent of women. But the researchers said this difference may have more to do with gender than with hypnosis itself.

"My suspicion is that the gender differences are not unique to hypnosis, but are connected to difficulties women have in trying to quit smoking in general," Joseph Green, an associate professor of psychology, said in a prepared statement.

He presented the findings July 30 at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association in Honolulu.

Green said none of the studies examined why hypnosis seemed more effective for men than women.

He said that if a smoker -- male or female -- is strongly motivated to quit, hypnosis should be as effective for them as any other smoking-cessation method. But he said people should avoid hypnosis treatments that guarantee success with one session.

Hypnosis to quit smoking often requires multiple sessions and needs to be combined with other approaches, such as cognitive behavior strategies, proper nutrition, exercise and avoidance of smoking triggers, he said.

More information

The American Cancer Society has more about how to quit smoking.

SOURCE: Ohio State University, news release, July 30, 2004

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