Introduction: Although smoking prevalence has declined dramatically among adults in the past 40 years, 19.3% of adults still smoke, including 20.1% of adults aged 18–24 years. Quitlines are effective, population-based interventions that increase successful cessation.
Aims: This study aims to describe the characteristics of young adult smokers aged 18–24 years who used telephone cessation counselling for assistance with quitting, to assess self-reported quit rates, and to examine predictors of quitting, compared to older adults.
Methods: We examined data from 4,542 young adult smokers aged 18–24 years and 46,094 smokers aged ≥25 years who enrolled in the American Cancer Society's quitline services during 2006–2008.
Results: Young adult smokers aged 18–24 years who called quitlines differed slightly from older adults in demographics and tobacco-use behaviours. There were no age-related differences in self-reported seven-day quit rates or 30-day quit rates at the seven-month follow-up. Predictors of quitting were mostly similar for the young adults and the older adults, although the odds of quitting were lower among young adults for living with vs. not living with a smoker.
Conclusions: Although young adult smokers under-utilise telephone cessation quitlines for assistance with quitting, those who do use these services have quit rates similar to older adults.