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Former smoker who had part of her tongue removed after cancer diagnosis urges others to quit

Jayne was diagnosed after a routine dentist appointment Credit: Cancer Research UK

A woman who had part of her tongue removed after being diagnosed with mouth cancer has urged others to quit smoking.

Jayne Campbell, from Brackla, Bridgend, was at a routine dentist appointment in 2016 when the dentist spotted a discoloured patch under her tongue.

Smoking, alongside alcohol is one of the leading causes of mouth cancer in the UK

The 57-year-old was referred to the dental hospital in Cardiff where the mass was confirmed as cancer.

''As I cried, my consultant told me I had smoked my last cigarette. He was so right,'' Jayne said.

''I was really shocked by the diagnosis and I knew I had to quit smoking straight away.

''Even though I was really scared, I had to be brave for my husband and two daughters.

''Even though I knew smoking wasn't good for me, I never thought it could happen to me. The worst thing was I knew everyone I loved would worry and there was nothing that I could do to take that worry away, that was awful.''

Jayne smoked 20 cigarettes a day before her diagnosis Credit: Cancer Research UK

Within four weeks, Jayne had surgery to remove a section of her tongue and a part of the floor of her mouth. Fortunately, the cancer treatment was successful.

Jayne, who described herself as a ''life-long smoker'' had previously smoked 20 cigarettes a day for 35 years. Since her diagnosis she has not had a single cigarette.

She uses an app on her phone to track how much money she has saved and has so far saved £7,682.

With life as a smoker well and truly behind her, Jayne wants to encourage others to quit.

''I would say to anyone looking to give up, it is hard at first, but it gets easier as time goes by, but you can do it and you will feel so much better, just think of how good you will feel and how much money you could save.''

Jayne's story comes as Cancer Research UK calls on the Welsh Government to commit to cutting the amount of people who smoke to from 17% to 5%.

They believe the number of smokers would drop by 220,000 between now and 2030 if the target is achieved.

The charity are calling for all smokers who visit hospital to be routinely offered support to quit.

The Welsh Government said they welcomed the recommendations made in the charity's report.

We welcome the report by Cancer Research UK and support actions which prevent the uptake of smoking and helping people to quit.

Our Tobacco Control Delivery Plan for Wales sets a clear vision for a smoke-free society in Wales in which the harm from tobacco is eradicated. We have begun the process of setting our priorities for post-2020 and we will take account of Cancer Research UK's report when agreeing the actions we will take to reduce smoking rates further to achieve a smoke-free Wales.

– Welsh Government Spokesperson