A former asthmatic is celebrating a smoke free year after breaking a 30-year habit.
David Lightley, from Stakeford, quit smoking with support from the Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking Service.
The 56-year-old started smoking in his twenties and made the decision to quit to celebrate his retirement.
He said: “Giving up takes a lot of will-power but it made it easier to have their support and I would encourage anyone who is thinking of quitting smoking to contact them.”
David attended his local NHS Stop Smoking clinic, using tablets recommended by the advisor which helped him beat the cravings.
He said: “I don’t think I would have managed without their help. Probably after a week I would have wanted to go back to smoking, but I can honestly say that I haven’t been tempted.
“I tried to give up a few years before using the nicotine patches, and although they helped me stop, I went back to it eventually.
“When I gave up this time I didn’t know about the tablets, but the advisor asked if I wanted to give them a try and they made all the difference for me.”
David, a former carer, has diabetes, high blood pressure and developed a related asthma. Although the condition was not attributed to smoking, he knew the habit would not help.
He said: “I knew smoking wasn’t helping my asthma, and it seemed ridiculous to be smoking a cigarette one minute and then using my inhaler the next – it was defeating the point of the medication.”
Brenda Warner, manager of Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking Service, urged people to get in contact to find out more about quitting smoking.
She said: “If you want to stop smoking and are considering using an e cigarette, or are confused about which products are licensed as medicines and what to do about your smoking, then we are here to support you.”
David used a non-nicotine replacement medication which is a 12-week course of tablets used to help adults stop smoking.
The medication helps reduce the craving and withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping smoking.
For more information on stopping smoking and Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking Service call (01670) 813135 or visit www.northumbria.nhs.uk/stopsmoking