Smokers urged to quit as part of Stoptober campaign

Representatives of Northumberland health and stop smoking services, Fresh and the county council.
Representatives of Northumberland health and stop smoking services, Fresh and the county council.

Smokers in Northumberland are being urged to give quitting a go for the launch of Stoptober.

Public Health England and Fresh are urging smokers from the area to sign up to Stoptober, the country’s 28 day mass quit attempt.

And to stand an even better chance of quitting, Northumberland residents are encouraged to sign up with their friends, family and colleagues, as evidence reveals that this type of ‘social quitting’ can dramatically improve people’s chances of successfully stopping.

Research shows that smokers are two thirds more likely to quit when their spouse stops smoking, and a third more likely to quit when a close friend or someone they work with.

The data also shows that individuals are much more likely to smoke if their partner or a close friend smokes – showing the powerful influence that people’s social networks have on their own smoking behaviour.

Lisa Surtees, acting director of Fresh, said: “Making a pact to quit with your partner or a friend is a great way to really boost your chances of kicking tobacco once and for all. That support can make all the difference and keep you going.”

Coun Susan Dungworth, cabinet member for adult care and public health at Northumberland County Council, aded: “Stoptober provides a great opportunity for people to take the first step to being smokefree.

“Nobody underestimates how difficult it can be for a smoker to give up but whether you’ve tried before and couldn’t, or have just made the big decision to stop – there is no better time.

“You are four times more likely to succeed with the help of the NHS Stop Smoking Service than by going it alone, and there is a huge amount of support available in Northumberland through GP practices, pharmacies and community venues.”

Over a quarter of a million people across the country signed up to Stoptober last year with more than half making it to 28 days; this year, it is expected the campaign will welcome the millionth sign up. By stopping smoking for 28 days you are five times more likely to stop for good.

To sign up to Stoptober, visit