The unprecedented numbers of Greater Manchester residents ditching tobacco can be linked to the wide range of support available. Evidence shows that people are four times more likely to stay smokefree if they get support.
Assistance is already provided through specialist stop-smoking services, expertise within GP services, and support in pharmacies across Greater Manchester.
And with the launch of innovative online support for Stoptober, more help is available than ever before. The new Stoptober Personal Quit Plan offers individual smokers tailored recommendations for the best ways of successfully quitting, based on the amount they smoke and any previous attempts to stop smoking. Search ‘Stoptober’ for details.
People can also receive practical advice on the range of services near to them through the city region’s own dedicated, free stop-smoking helpline: 0300 123 1044.
One successful quitter is Salford ex-smoker Diane Edmonds, who successfully stopped smoking in February and is now backing the Stoptober campaign.
The grandmother of eight had resigned herself to the fact that she would be a smoker forever after several failed attempts to give up. However she was offered the chance to trial an e-cigarette combined with support from a specialist stop-smoking advisor – and finally beat her addiction.
She said: “I didn’t have any nicotine withdrawal at all, because of course with a vape you’re getting all the nicotine but none of the other nasty things you get in cigarettes. If I thought of a cig I’d just have a quick vape and the moment passed.
“Initially I was wondering how I was even going to do the four weeks my stop smoking advisor Mark had asked me to commit to. But then that came and went and I was getting on so well I paid and got a new e-cig with a good battery. And now five months on I haven’t been near a cigarette.
“I would recommend anyone smoking to try giving up like this. For me it took away the having to have willpower and feeling like I was missing out on something.”
Matthew Evison, Consultant in Respiratory Medicine at University Hospital South Manchester and a Lung Cancer Expert, said: “Many smokers don’t fully appreciate the strength of tobacco addiction. This is a physical disease where the brain becomes dependent on nicotine. Without nicotine, a smoker will suffer intense withdrawal symptoms and that’s why it’s so hard to quit smoking without help.
“This Stoptober we want as many smokers as possible to seek out treatment and support and beat this disease once and for all. There is no greater intervention a smoker can do to improve their health than to stop smoking.”
Sarah Price, Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership’s Director for Population Health, said: “As Stoptober approaches we are urging people to have a look at the wide-range of support that’s out there for them and grab it with both hands.
“If you’ve made the decision to stop smoking then we would urge you to not try and go it alone, and instead increase your chances of success by getting support in place. Give our helpline a call on 0300 123 1044 or check out the Stoptober Personal Quit Plan and set a date to quit.”
She added: “We want Greater Manchester to be the first city region in Europe to make smoking history, an aim that is supported by four out of five Greater Manchester residents. This may seem like a tall order, but with all the practical on-the-ground help that’s offered to smokers we are doing everything we can to make this a reality.”