If you’re sick of trying to convince your friends to quit smoking, don’t worry, you may no longer have to. Edith Cowan University and Curtin University researchers, led by Associate Professor Paul Chang, have invented a talking cigarette packet, designed to encourage them to stop.
Using a small box, similar to a cigarette pack, fitted with a speaker and microphone, smokers can record their own voice, or the voices of their concerned friends and family, to play whenever the pack is opened for a new cigarette.
Personal touches such as this have been shown to be powerful motivators for behaviour change, particularly for parents whose children record quit messages. An added factor is that the messages can be mildly embarrassing for smokers, which can help them fight their cravings, especially in public.
The research group hopes to expand to a larger, randomised control trial at some point in the future.
Associate Professor Paul Chang with one of the “talking” cigarette packets.