Stoptober, the 28-day stop smoking campaign, is back next month – and people in Wolverhampton are being encouraged to sign up and stub out their cigarettes for the very last time.
The 28-day stop smoking challenge from Public Health England begins on 1 October and is based on research that shows that people who can stop smoking for 28 days are five times more likely to stay smokefree for good.
Quitting smoking is easier with the right support. The most successful quit attempts are made with a combination of quit methods, so this year Stoptober is providing a free online Personal Quit Plan, which helps smokers find the right support for them.
Options include face-to-face support, nicotine replacement therapies such as patches, inhalers or lozenges and e-cigarettes. There are also the Stoptober app, Facebook messenger bot, daily emails and Stoptober online communities.
Latest figures show the percentage of adults who smoke in Wolverhampton dropped from 16.5% in 2015 to 14.4% in 2017, and that smoking rates in Wolverhampton are now lower than the national average.
Despite this, smoking remains the largest preventable cause of death in Wolverhampton and is responsible for nearly 1,800 hospital admissions a year.
Councillor Hazel Malcolm, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: “Stopping smoking is the best thing you can do for your health and the health of those around you.
“It is the biggest cause of preventable illness and premature deaths in the country, with one in every two long-term smokers dying prematurely from a smoking-related disease unless they quit.
“Quitting can significantly improve people’s health and well-being, on both a short-term and long-term basis. For instance, 48 hours after stopping smoking, carbon monoxide will be eliminated from your body; after 72 hours, breathing becomes easier; and from two weeks onwards, your circulation improves.
“Five years after quitting, your risk of heart attack falls by half compared with someone who is still smoking, while after 10 years it is the same as if you had never smoked. Also 10 years after quitting, your risk of lung cancer is about half that of a person who still smokes.
“While quitting is never easy, Stoptober is the perfect time to give it a try, particularly with the support of friends, family and work colleagues.
“Everyone’s quitting journey is different, and Stoptober can help you choose which one will work for you – and just remember that, if you can make it to 28 days smokefree, you’re five times more likely to quit for good.”
To take part in Stoptober, please sign up at www.nhs.uk/oneyou/be-healthier/quit-smoking/stoptober.