Smokers encouraged to sign up to Stoptober

Smokers in Northumberland are being encouraged to stub out the habit this Stoptober.

Thursday, 19th September 2019, 12:58 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st October 2019, 2:32 pm
Judith Stonebridge, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust; Liz Morgan, Northumberland County Council; Kerry Lynch, Northumberland County Council; Andy Lloyd, Fresh; Connie Reardon, NHCFT; Julie Sansom, SNHCFT; Brenda Warner, NHCFT; Angela Watson, NHCFT; Gillian Emmerson, NHCFT; and Coun Veronica Jones. Picture by Lee Dobson Photography.

Health officials say quitting smoking has health benefits – including relieving stress, anxiety and depression – as well as saving a 10-a-day smoker around £135 a month.

Despite smoking rates being lower than ever before, 16 per cent of people still smoke across the North East.

Northumberland County Council and Public Health England are encouraging all smokers to join in with the nation’s biggest quit attempt beginning on October 1 by providing them with the support and information they need.

Ailsa Rutter OBE, Director of Fresh, said: “The North East has seen the biggest drop in smoking in England since 2005 and we are urging anyone who smokes to just give it a go for Stoptober – you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

“There are so many reasons to quit but at a time when we are all aware of the importance of better mental health, evidence is clear that quitting smoking can help reduce stress, anxiety and depression and improve positive mood.”

Coun Veronica Jones, portfolio holder for adult wellbeing and health at Northumberland County Council, said: “It’s never too late to quit smoking and it’s always worth another go even if you've tried before.

“There are lots of options available to help you quit, including switching to e-cigarettes or prescription treatments to help beat cravings, and our Stop Smoking services in Northumberland are there to help you.”

For more visit www.nhs.uk/oneyou/for-your-body/quit-smoking/stoptober/ or contact the Northumberland Stop Smoking Service on 01670 813135.

Dr Rosemary Leonard said: “We know it can be hard to give up smoking but now is the time to give it a try, whether it’s the first time or you’ve tried before.

“The Stoptober community can really help with motivation and staying on track.

“Additional support is also available from a variety of places including local stop smoking services, GPs, pharmacies and of course, the Stoptober and NHS Smokefree websites.

“Quitting smoking is the best thing a smoker can do for their health — Stoptober is a brilliant chance to quit with others for 28 days and see the benefits for yourself.”