Ever thought about quitting smoking, but can’t seem to curb your addiction? The answer to your success may lie in your cell phone!
A recent study has found that the brain region most active when trying to refrain from smoking and also found that text-messaging is an effective way to battle a smoking addiction!
Three separate studies were conducted at the University of Oregon, University of Michigan and UCLA with heavy smoking subjects who were recruited from the American Lung Association’s Freedom From Smoking program.
The scientists at the universities used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to single out the area of the brain which controls impulse control; specifically, the part of the brain that is active when a smoker resists the urge to smoke.
The results? They found that a simple fMRI scan can predict a single persons ability to resist smoking.
The researchers also conducted a second study in which they asked their subjects to send text messages 8 times a day for 3 weeks in an effort to document their cravings, use of cigarettes and mood.
Their findings: Text messaging is as effective as expensive data collection devices geared toward people who quit smoking.
This is great news since an estimated 86% of Americans have cell phones and 91% of those are capable of sending text messages. While these numbers are for Americans overall, the statistics are even higher amongst college students!
In an issue of Health Psychology, the study states:
“Text messaging may be an ideal delivery mechanism for tailored interventions because it is low-cost; most people already possess the existing hardware and the messages can be delivered near-instantaneously into real world situations.”