Smokers across the South West are being urged to take part in Stoptober – the mass quitting challenge from Public Health England starting on 1 October – and join the nearly 15 million people across the country who have already quit.
The smoking rate across the South West has fallen by 3.2% over the past four years from 18.7%, with the smoking rate in the South West now at 15.5%.
Alongside this, according to the latest data from Nielsen, the number of cigarettes sold in the South West dropped by 14.15% in 2015.
Last year, out of the 2.5 million smokers who made a quit attempt, 500,000 people (20%) were successful - the highest recorded success rate and up from just 13.6% six years ago.
This increase in successful stop smoking attempts reflects the high number of people using quitting aids across England. In 2015, just over a million people (1,027,000) used an e- cigarette in a quit attempt while around 700,000 used a licensed nicotine replacement product such as patches or gum. In addition, in the South West, over 30,000 people had a successful quit attempt through their local stop smoking service in 2015/16.
"While we know that quitting smoking is not easy, this Stoptober is a perfect time to try again. The best thing a smoker can do for their health is to stop smoking. There is more help and support available now than ever before. The introduction of standardised packs removes the glamorous branding and brings health warnings to the fore and e-cigarettes, which many smokers find helpful for quitting, are now regulated to assure their safety and quality. "
- Professor Debra Lapthorne, Centre Director for Public Health England South West
"I’m really pleased to be supporting Stoptober this year. I have smoked pretty steadily since I was a teenager, even through my cricket career. I have tried to give up before and know how tough it is, but I am going to try and quit again from 1 October. Even if you have tried quitting before like me and failed, just give it another go and keep trying. The more you try to quit the more likely you are to get there. Stoptober is here to help, so let’s try and get through to 28 days without a fag by taking it one day at a time."
- Phil Tufnell, ex-England cricketer and Question of Sport captain
Stoptober is back for a fifth year, having driven almost a million quit attempts to date. It starts on the 1 October and is based on research that by the time you have quit for 28 days you are 5 times more likely to stop for good.
For more information visit the below link that includes details of online support available to you.