Smokers are encouraged to join the Stoptober challenge

stoptoberFor the second consecutive year, the anti-smoking campaign ‘Stoptober’ will be running and aimed at encouraging smokers to quit smoking for 28 days in October.

Public Health England (PHE) is behind the campaign which begins on October 1st and promotion for it has already begun across England and Wales. PHE state that 2012’s challenge was an overwhelming success, with over 275,000 people registering for last year’s Stoptober, of which 160,000 managed to finish the 28 day challenge.

The 28 day time length for the challenge is not simply an arbitrary number; health experts say that a smoker who quits for 28 days, and abstains from cigarettes, could add a week onto their lifespan, every 28 days, for the rest of their life.

The benefits to stopping smoking

Those who quit usually experience physical improvements such as a better sense of taste and smell, more energy, a delayed onset of facial aging and wrinkles, whiter teeth, fresher breath and better sex due to improved blood flow and stronger erections for men.

In the longer term, those who quit smoking can significantly reduce the risk of suffering from heart disease and a wide range of cancers such as lung cancer, on top of preserving the health of those around you as there will now be no secondhand smoke.

England’s chief medical officer, Professor Dame Sally Davies, said: “One in two long-term smokers die as a result of smoking, this is the single biggest cause of premature death taking more than 100,000 lives in the UK and costing the NHS up to £2.7 billion each year. Life is precious and Stoptober is all about supporting and encouraging each other to quit – potentially adding years to your life. Taking part in the challenge is a first step to a longer and healthier life, so have a go by stopping with Stoptober.”

Professor Kevin Fenton, director of health and wellbeing at Public Health England, added: “Campaigns such as Stoptober, along with the support provided by local stop smoking services, play a huge role in helping people to stop. Whilst smoking prevalence across the country as a whole is falling steadily, it remains high in some parts. We want every smoker to consider making a quit attempt this October and join the thousands of people who are feeling the benefits from stopping smoking last year.”

However, there are also major monetary benefits to be felt from giving up cigarettes – particularly important when considering how difficult it is for many families in the current financial climate. By quitting smoker, the average smoker can expect to save more than £150 a month and nearly £2,000 a year – if we take £7.77 for the cost price of a packet of cigarettes and an average daily consumption of 13 cigarettes per smoker. Incredibly, it was estimated that during last year’s Stoptober campaign £25 million was saved by 160,000 people from not buying cigarettes.

Those who want to sign up for Stoptober will receive a free stop-smoking pack, a 28-day mobile phone app and text support via daily updates and advice on quitting.

If you are a smoker who is aged 18 or above and wants to quit, you do not need to wait for Stoptober to begin. Quit today with the help of Medical Specialists Pharmacy. You can obtain the smoking cessation medication Champix following an online consultation with one of Medical Specialists’ GMC registered doctors. Champix works out from as little as just £75.00 per pack and mimics the effect of nicotine on the body, reducing the urge to smoke and relieving withdrawal symptoms. It can also decrease the enjoyment you experience of smoking if you are still smoking whilst on the treatment.

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