International Journal of Public Health

, Volume 55, Issue 6, pp 599–608 | Cite as

Workplace smoking restrictions: smoking behavior and the intention to change among continuing smokers

  • Jeannette Rüge
  • Anja Broda
  • Sabina Ulbricht
  • Gudrun Klein
  • Hans-Jürgen Rumpf
  • Ulrich John
  • Christian Meyer
Original Article



In this study, the association between three levels of workplace smoking restrictions and smoking behavior and variables related to the intention to quit among continuing smokers was examined.


Adult smokers were recruited from consecutive patients attending a random sample of 34 general medical practices from a pre-defined, north-eastern German region. Self-reported data were gathered in the waiting room by questionnaire. Cross-sectional data of 1,012 employees were analyzed using ordered logistic regression analyses.


Among the sample, 12% reported a smoke-free workplace, 51% had partial, and 37% no smoking restrictions. Daily cigarette consumption was lower when there were higher levels of restriction. No association was found between smoking restrictions and previous attempts to quit, nicotine dependence, or indicators of adjusted inhalation to compensate for the lower number of cigarettes (e.g. puffs per cigarette, darker coloring of filter). Smoking restrictions were positively associated with single psychological measures related to the intention to quit.


Employees who continue to smoke may benefit from workplace smoking restrictions in terms of reduced, active smoke exposure and psychological effects increasing their readiness to quit.


Workplace smoking ban Tobacco control Smoking habits Inhalation behavior Transtheoretical model 

Beschränkungen des Tabakrauchens am Arbeitsplatz: Rauchverhalten und die Intention zur Verhaltensänderung bei fortgesetztem Rauchen



In der vorliegenden Studie wird der Zusammenhang zwischen drei Ausprägungsgraden von Rauchbeschränkungen am Arbeitsplatz und dem Rauchverhalten, sowie der Intention zur Beendigung des Tabakrauchens untersucht.


Erwachsene Raucher wurden aus einer Stichprobe von konsekutive Patienten in 34 zufällig ausgewählten hausärztlichen Praxen einer nordostdeutschen Region rekrutiert. Die Datenerhebung erfolgte per Fragebogen im Wartezimmer. Mittels ordinaler logistischer Regression wurden Daten von 1012 Berufstätigen analysiert.


In der vorliegenden Stichprobe gaben 12% an, an einem rauchfreien Arbeitsplatz beschäftigt zu sein. Keine oder partielle Rauchbeschränkungen am Arbeitsplatz berichteten 37% bzw. 51%. Ein höherer Grad der Rauchbeschränkung ging mit niedrigerem täglichem Zigarettenkonsum einher. Zwischen Rauchbeschränkungen und früheren Abstinenzversuchen, Nikotinabhängigkeit oder Indikatoren für ein kompensatorisches Inhalationsverhalten bei reduziertem Zigarettenkonsum (z.B. Züge pro Zigarette, dunklere Verfärbung des Zigarettenfilters) fand sich kein statistisch bedeutsamer Zusammenhang. Für einzelne psychologische Variablen, die nach Vorbefunden mit der Bereitschaft zur Aufgabe des Rauchens in Zusammenhang stehen, fanden sich positive Zusammenhänge mit dem Grad der Rauchbeschränkungen am Arbeitsplatz.


Auch weiterhin rauchende Arbeitnehmer profitieren von Rauchbeschränkungen am Arbeitsplatz durch eine verminderte aktive Tabakrauchexposition und psychologische Effekte, welche die Bereitschaft zu Aufgabe des Rauchens erhöhen.



This study is part of the Research Collaboration in Early Substance Use Intervention (EARLINT), funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (grant no. 01EB0120, 01EB0420), the Social Ministry of the State of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania (grant no. IX311a 406.68.43.05), the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, grant no. JO150/6-1) and the Krupp von Bohlen and Halbach foundation.

Conflict of interest statement

There are no conflicts of interest.


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel/Switzerland 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeannette Rüge
    • 1
  • Anja Broda
    • 2
  • Sabina Ulbricht
    • 1
  • Gudrun Klein
    • 3
  • Hans-Jürgen Rumpf
    • 4
  • Ulrich John
    • 1
  • Christian Meyer
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Epidemiology and Social MedicineErnst-Moritz-Arndt-University GreifswaldGreifswaldGermany
  2. 2.Coordination Center for Clinical TrialsUniversity of LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  3. 3.Scientific Institute of Hematologists and Oncologists in Private PracticesCologneGermany
  4. 4.Department of Psychiatry and PsychotherapyUniversity of LübeckLübeckGermany

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