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Stop smoking service opens in Leicestershire and Rutland

Quit 51 aims to encourage the counties' 96,000 smokers to quit Credit: PA Wire

A new service to help people stop smoking has been launched in Leicestershire and Rutland.

Quit 51 aims to encourage the counties' 96,000 smokers to quit, in order to improve their health.

Commissioned by Leicestershire County Council, the free service is easily accessible through the internet and public venues such as pharmacies, GP surgeries, dentists and hospitals.

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Plans to ban smoking in cars carrying children move a step closer

Yesterday we reported on plans by Labour to place a ban on smoking in cars carrying children.

The plans have now moved a step closer after a vote in the House of Lords.

Campaigners say the ban will protect 500,000 children who are exposed to smoke in cars every week.

Last night's vote means it could become law if MPs are given a free vote on the issue when it returns to the Commons.

Baroness Floella Benjamin said that second hand smoke is a 'major trigger' for people who suffer from asthma.

Read more on the story here.

YOUR VIEWS: Smoking in cars with children

Smoking in cars that are carrying children has already been banned in some overseas states Credit: REUTERS/Phil Noble

You have been giving us your views on our Facebook page on whether smoking in cars while carrying children should be banned.

Here is a selection of your comments:

Steven Allsop: "Smoking in cars should be banned full stop."

Stephanie Newton: "Unsure why a law should be needed. Anyone who cares about their children's health would not smoke around them wherever that is. Just be better parents and less selfish. Surely this shouldn't even be a debate."

Rachel Fairfield: "As a smoker, ban cigarettes totally! Temptation is too hard! If I had willpower I wouldn't smoke at all! Ban it!"

Diane Reed: "I agree no smoking in cars with children. But if I wish to smoke in my car on my own that's my choice."

Hayley Conway: "It should be banned altogether and save the country millions in healthcare!"

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PM 'ready to listen to the arguments' on smoking in cars

Downing Street said David Cameron was ready to "listen to the arguments" about a ban on smoking in cars that are carrying children.

Prime Minister David Cameron 'wants to listen to the arguments' on banning smoking in cars with children. Credit: Luke MacGregor/PA Wire

The Prime Minister's official spokesman told a media briefing, "This is an issue that is going to be discussed and debated in Parliament today, and the Prime Minister's view is that he wants to listen to the arguments."

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Smoking in cars with children banned in some countries

Smoking in cars that are carrying children has already been banned in some states of Canada, Australia and the US and the whole of South Africa.

Labour hopes to impose a ban on smoking in cars that are carrying children in England. Credit: Clive Gee/PA Wire

Canada's Cancer Advisory Coalition claims the states' bans on smoking in cars have reduced children's exposure to second-hand smoke by 33%.

'Balls To Stop' campaign gets going

When making the decision to stop, people often don’t know what to expect and how long the process can take. It can take 3 months to become a non-smoker. Physical cravings often last less than a week, whilst it’s the psychological craving which goes on for longer.

'Balls To Stop' aims to help you stub it out! Credit: PA/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Here are a few ideas to help you approach the challenge of quitting:

Planning to stop...

  • Choose a day to quit. Ask your family and friends for support

  • Plan a reward for the end of the first day / first week / first month

  • Bin all your cigarettes, ashtrays and lighters

  • Consult your GP about nicotine replacement therapy (net), proven to double your success rate

How to stop...

  • Get through the first day

  • Chew sugar-free gum as a replacement

  • For strong cravings take deep breaths and delay giving in to the urge, which will pass after a couple of minutes

  • Play with a pencil or coin if you need to hold something; Anything but a cigarette

How to stay smoke-free...

  • Take it one day at a time

  • Avoid situations associated with smoking to begin with

  • Don’t be tempted to smoke one cigarette. This often leads to two, three and many more

  • Save cigarette money as an incentive. On average smokers spend over £100 per month

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