Smokers urged to stop for “Stoptober”

Smokers are being urged to give up during ‘Stopober’ and the anti-smoking campaign is marking its 10 anniversary and has seen 2.3 million people quit in the last decade.

A survey has revealed that of current smokers nearly half (45 per cent) have been smoking more since the first lockdown began. Key reasons reported are due to being bored in the lockdowns (43 per cent) or the Covid-19 pandemic making them more anxious (42 per cent).

More than two-fifths (43 per cent) of smokers surveyed by Public Health England believe that the strength of addiction and craving is the biggest obstacle to quitting, followed by the stress of everyday life (42 per cent). More than half of smokers want to quit, and three-quarters (75 per cent) would never have started smoking if they could go back in time. Of those who want to quit, more than half (55 per cent) would like to do so to improve their physical health or to save money (52 per cent).

Scott Crosby, Tobacco Control Programme Manager at Public Health England, said, “Since the pandemic hit we’ve seen an increase in 18 to 34 year olds taking up smoking, which is why Stoptober is as vital as ever. Now in its 10th year it’s supported over 2 million smokers to give quitting a go.

“Quitting smoking will not only immediately improve your physical health but also your bank balance. Research shows that if you can make it to 28 days smoke-free then you are 5-times more likely to quit for good.

“It’s been a tough time over the pandemic for smokers. But the numbers trying to quit are up and the success rate is up. Now is the time to do it! Sign up to Stoptober and make it a success,” he added.

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Written by

Deirdre Tynan

Deirdre Tynan is an award-winning journalist who enjoys bringing the best in news reporting to Spain’s largest English-language newspaper, Euro Weekly News. She has previously worked at The Mirror, Ireland on Sunday and for news agencies, media outlets and international organisations in America, Europe and Asia. A huge fan of British politics and newspapers, Deirdre is equally fascinated by the political scene in Madrid and Sevilla. She moved to Spain in 2018 and is based in Jaen.


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