Health commissioners in Sefton are encouraging residents to challenge themselves by taking part in Stoptober, a month-long challenge to quit smoking.
Smoking is one of the biggest causes of death and illness in the UK – killing around 78,000 people every year and leaving many more with life-altering illnesses. Serious illnesses such as lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and heart disease have all been linked to smoking. Quitting will make a huge difference to your overall health and you will notice improvements almost instantly.
Dr Craig Gillespie, local GP and chair of NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “Stoptober is a great opportunity to stop smoking. It sets you an achievable short term goal but who knows, you may be able to keep it up past October.
“We understand that giving up smoking is extremely difficult – that’s why the NHS provides several different types of support services. These include the Smokefree app and one-to-one or group stop smoking sessions.”
Dr Rob Caudwell, local GP and NHS Southport and Formby CCG chair, said: “Once you stop smoking you will notice a change in your pulse within minutes and your breathing will become easier within 72 hours. Giving up smoking is one of the best things you can do for your health. I would encourage all smokers to give Stoptober a go.”
There are several options to help you quit smoking. Chewing gum, receiving daily support with the new Stoptober app, as well as using a number of nicotine replacement therapies, such as patches and E-cigarettes are all great ways to help you quit.
Colette Kearney, Service Manager at Smokefree Sefton (pictured right), said: “Smokefree Sefton is a free programme commissioned by Sefton Council, which provides behavioural support combined with up to 12 weeks’ worth of products to help you quit smoking.
“By taking advantages of resources like ours you will be supported throughout your journey of quitting and will have a better chance of being successful with it.”
For more information on Smokefree Sefton, a partner of Living Well Sefton, visit their website.
To find out more about the services available to help you quit smoking, visit the NHS website.
To find out more about Stoptober, visit https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/be-healthier/quit-smoking/stoptober