Each year thousands quit smoking for 28 days when Stoptober starts on 1st October.
When Stoptober begins everyone quits together, with individuals supported by employers, communities, charities and other partners, as well encouraging each other via the Facebook page. By signing up you can access a range of free support materials including packs, emails, texts and an app - all providing information, advice and daily tips to help you through the month.
By making it to 28 days smoke free, you are five times more likely to quit for good.
No matter how you take your tobacco whether it is chewing, cigars, shisha, in a pipe or by regular cigarettes, you are still at risk of cancer, and it is incredibly addictive. No matter what you may have been told before, there is no “risk-free” way to use tobacco.
Smoking cessation can make a drastic improvement to your lifestyle and health in ways you might not expect. Even after just 20 minutes of stopping smoking, your blood pressure and pulse rate returns to normal. After 2 days all carbon monoxide escapes the body and the lungs start to clear debris.
The long term effects offer significant improvements to your health and wellbeing. After 5 years the risk of heart attack falls by 50% and after 10 years the risk of lung cancer falls by 50%.
Not only could your health improve, but there could be financial benefits too. The average smoker (13 cigarettes a day) spends £141 a month which works out at £1,696. Think of the difference that could make your summer holiday or savings fund...
Smoking can also affect your loved ones; nearly three quarters of children worry that their mum or dad will die because they smoke. Not only that, but if you smoke, your children are three times more likely to smoke when they grow up too.
Quitting is easier if you know what to expect. From the moment you stop smoking your body starts its recovery process. During this time you may find that you experience some nicotine withdrawal and recovery symptoms, such as:
- The urge to smoke
- Restless and irritable
- Frustration and lack of concentration
- Tired or difficulty sleeping
However, for every symptom there is a cure and your GP may be able to advise medication to support you throughout the process. Support can be found in many places:
- The NHS Quitkit
- The smokefree mobile app
- Free local NHS Stop Smoking Service
- Email support from the NHS
- Health Assured Counselling Team
For more help and support please contact the Health Assured counselling team or visit the Health and Wellbeing Portal