Effectiveness of interventions to reduce exposure to parental secondhand smoke at home among children in China: A systematic review

Yan Hua Zhou, Yim Wah Mak, Grace W.K. Ho

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


There are health consequences to exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS). About two-thirds of children in China live with at least one person, usually a parent, who smokes at home. However, none of the reviews of interventions for reducing SHS have targeted children in China. The purpose of this study was to review the effectiveness of interventions for reducing parental SHS exposure at home among children in China. We searched various electronic databases for English and Chinese publications appearing between 1997 and 2017. Thirteen relevant studies were identified. Common strategies used in intervention groups were non-pharmacological approaches such as counseling plus self-help materials, and attempting to persuade fathers to quit smoking. Family interactions and follow-up sessions providing counseling or using text messages could be helpful to successful quitting. Several encouraging results were observed, including lower cotinine levels in children (n = 2), reduced tobacco consumption (n = 5), and increased quit rates (n = 6) among parents. However, the positive effects were not sustained 3~6 months after the interventions. Self-reported quitting without bio-chemical validation was the most common outcome measure. A study design using biochemical validations, a longer follow-up period, and targeting all people living with children in the same household is recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jan 2019


  • Children
  • China
  • Homes
  • Parental smoking
  • Secondhand smoke exposure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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