UBC program aims to help young men kick the butt habit
Quitting smoking is a challenge for anybody – more so for young fathers, who are the focus of a new campaign underway through UBC.
Findings from the Families Controlling and Eliminating Tobacco (FACET) research program have provided in-depth understandings of smoking patterns among new and expectant dads, laying the groundwork for new approaches to support efforts to reduce and quit smoking.
Prof. Joan Bottorff from UBC’s Okanagan School of Nursing and Prof. John Oliffe from UBC’s Vancouver School of Nursing have led a team of researchers from UBC to develop a web-based resource to help new dads reduce and quit. The Dads in Gear (DIG) website has interactive and engaging web-based resources on fathering, healthy living and tobacco reduction.
“Studies suggest that men are motivated to reduce and quit smoking when they become a father, largely because of a desire to serve as a positive role model for their children,” says Bottorff, director of UBC’s Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention. “Ironically, the additional responsibility of becoming a parent can make it more difficult to quit smoking.”
The website — http://dadsingear.ok.ubc.ca/ — has videos of experts speaking about nicotine addiction, fathering issues, and healthy living, as well as testimonials from dads who quit smoking. Other online resources include hints for dealing with cravings, quizzes, polls and places for dads to share their stories. The research team believes that these interactive components will encourage communication between dads and create a supportive virtual community for reducing and quitting smoking.
“Quitting smoking at this time in men’s lives can significantly reduce their risk of heart disease, cancer and other chronic diseases,” says Oliffe. “As well, it increases the chances of their partners will be able to stay smoke free, strengthens the overall well-being of their family, and prevents future generations from smoking.”
Dads in Gear is the only men-friendly smoking cessation website in Canada designed specifically for new dads, and has the potential to reach a wide range of fathers wherever they are and whenever they choose. This new resource is being launched for National Non-Smoking week, January 19 to 25.
The research is funded by a grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
More information: www.cihr-irsc.gc.ca
More information about Dads in Gear can be found at: http://dadsingear.ok.ubc.ca/