Some of Leicestershire's biggest sporting names are backing a new campaign to help people in the region stop smoking.
A campaign to eradicate 'fake fags' from Nottingham is moving into the work place.
Smokers are being encouraged to give up the cigarettes for the whole of October. It's part of a national campaign called "Stoptober"
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.
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
Sports stars from Leicester have been out today to support the launch of the 'Balls to Stop' anti-smoking campaign.
The 'Balls To Stop' campaign recognises the negative impact that smoking has on the local community and it aims to stop it. But in order to quit smoking, you have to want to quit smoking first.
Here are a few facts which might make you think twice before lighting up again:
- Quit before 35 and life-expectancy is only slightly less than a non-smoker
- Quit before 50 and the smoking-related death-risk is reduced by 50%
- A twenty-a-day smoker saves over £1000 a year
- Improved general health and well-being
- Reduction in chest-infections/colds
- Food and drink tastes better
When attempting to stop smoking, people often don't know what to expect. If you're thinking of quitting, this simple timeline shows how you stand to benefit over time, from the moment you decide to give up:
- After 72 hours - Breathing becomes easier, as Bronchial tubes begin to relax and energy levels increase
- 1 month - Skin appearance improves, owing to improved skin perfusion
- 3 to 8 months - Cough, wheezing and breathing problems improve and lung function increases by up to 10%
- 1 year - Risk of a heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker
- 10 years - Risk of lung cancer falls to about half that of a smoker
- 15 years - Risk of heart attack falls to the same level that it would be for someone who has never smoked
Some of the region's most influential sportsmen are backing a new campaign to quit smoking.
The biggest cause of illness and premature death in UK, smoking causes over 100,000 deaths each year. Just 50% of long-term smokers go on to live beyond the age of 70.
- Lung cancer - 80% of deaths are smoking-related
- Other cancers - Of the mouth, throat, pancreas and kidney as well as Leukaemia are common in smokers
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) - A serious lung-disease, with another 80% of deaths directly linked to smoking
- Heart-disease - 1 out of 6 deaths are due to smoking
- Circulation problems - Tobacco damages the lining of blood vessels, causing strokes and aneurysms
- Arthritis - Smoking is responsible for 20% of cases
- Gum disease
Smoking also contributes to other harmful and debilitating health-issues, including:
- Sexual problems - Smoking cause impotency and reduces fertility in both men and women
- Ageing - Nicotine damages the skin, making people appear older than they are
- Menopause - On average, women who smoke are likely to experience menopause two years earlier than non-smokers
The East Midlands is the best performing region in the country at successfully quitting smoking.
A report from the Health and Social Care Information Centre found that nearly six in ten East Midlanders stopped smoking with the help of the NHS.
The report also says more women then men set a date to quit, although men were more successful at giving up.
Thousands of residents in Leicester have backed a smoke-free campaign, which raises awareness of the dangers of smoking in confined spaces.
The national 'Smoke-free Homes and Cars' campaign which launches today, is being supported by 4,400 people in Leicester who are currently receiving support by the NHS Trust in hope of quitting the habit.
Up to five million children across the UK are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke in the home, resulting in over 300,000 GP visits and 9,500 hospital admissions for children each year, the NHS has warned.
Karen House, specialist advisor for the STOP! Smoking Service, said: “Not only does smoking in front of children directly impact their health through secondhand smoke, but children of smokers are 90% more likely to become smokers themselves."
A Nottingham man involved in the counterfeit cigarettes trade, have today been sentenced.
Daniel Brown of Nottingham and Darren Stanley from Blackpool were caught with illegal cigarettes in their vans during a covert surveillance operation by HM Revenue and Customs investigators.
Stanley then attempted to escape by driving his vehicle through the front garden of a home. Officers blocked his path but he failed to stop and deliberately rammed his van into the side of a HMRC undercover vehicle, endangering the officer inside.
Brown’s vehicle, a Peugeot van, was full of boxes containing 250,000 counterfeit cigarettes.
Daniel Brown from Arnold, Nottingham, was sentenced to 20 weeks imprisonment suspended for 18 months and ordered to carry out 120 hours of community work. He was also ordered to pay £425.
Over 28,000 people in the Midlands have taken part in Stoptober, the first ever 28-day mass smoking quit attempt.
The new campaign challenged smokers to quit for a month.
According to the government's principle medical adviser, Chief Medical Officer Professor Dame Sally Davies, research shows that people who stop smoking for 28 days are five times more likely to stay smoke-free.
The Department of Health said that smoking is the biggest cause of premature death in England and accounts for over 100,000 deaths in the UK each year.
One in two long-term smokers will die from a smoking-related disease.
For top ten tips on how to stop smoking click here.