The Break and Continue Statements



The Break Statement

The break statement, when executed in a while, for, do…while or switch statement, causes an immediate exit from that statement.

Program execution continues with the next statement. Common uses of the break statement are to escape early from a loop or to skip the remainder of a switch statement.


    // Using the break statement in a for statement
    #include <stdio.h>
    // function main begins program execution
    int main( void )
        {
     int a; // counter
   
    // loop 10 times
     for ( a = 1; a <= 10; ++a ) {
    // if a is 5, terminate loop
     if ( a == 5 ) {
         break; // break loop only if a is 5
      } // end if
      printf( "%d ", a ); // display value of a
     } // end for
   
    printf( "\nEnd of loop at a == %d\n", a );
    } // end function main

    Output:
    1 2 3 4
    End of loop at a = 5

Continue Statement

The continue statement, when executed in a while, for or do…while statement, skips the remaining statements in the body of that control statement and performs the next iteration of the loop.

In while and do…while statements, the loop-continuation test is evaluated immediately after the continue statement is executed. In the for statement, the increment expression is executed, then the loop-continuation test is evaluated.

   
    // Using the continue statement in a for statement
    #include <stdio.h>
    // function main begins program execution
    int main( void )
    {
     unsigned int a; // counter
    // loop 10 times
     for ( a = 1; a <= 10; ++a ) {
    // if a is 5, continue with next iteration of loop
      if ( a == 7 ) {   
         continue; // skip remaining code in loop body
      } // end if
      printf( "%u ", a ); // display value of a
    } // end for
   
      puts( "\nUsed continue to skip printing the value 7" );
    } // end function main

    Output:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 8 9 10
    Used continue to skip printing the value 7

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