Stoptober is back

  • 25
  • May

Stoptober, the 28 day no smoking challenge is back. Starting October 1, millions of people across the country will be trying to kick the habit for good.

Here in Islington help is at hand for people who want to stop smoking, but need a bit of extra support to succeed.

Like Cassandra Gray who joined a 7-week stop smoking group and says it gave her the encouragement she needed to stop smoking.

“When I joined the group, one of the group leaders said ‘you can do it!’ I needed to hear that they believed in me,” she said. “I did struggle to stop completely but the group members were very supportive and encouraging and that helped me.

“Now that I don’t smoke, I feel like I can breathe better in the morning when I wake up. I used to have an annoying little cough which has gone now. My nails look cleaner and my skin has a nice glow, as if I’ve been on holiday.

“I’m taking it one day at a time. I don’t want to be a slave to smoking anymore,” she added.

A smoker for 25 years, Colin Thompson kicked the habit after he was referred to the stop smoking clinic at the Whittington Hospital.

“It was good to have a professional to speak to, who told me it was possible to get it done,” said Colin. “The medication seemed to get me through. Nicotine replacement is what made it possible for me to stop smoking. I used the inhalator after first trying the patches. I would recommend the inhalator to anyone; it really takes away the need for nicotine.

Not only has Colin noticed the health benefits of giving up smoking. “Walking back from shops carrying my shopping is easier,” he says. He has also noticed more money in his pocket.

“The money I save every month is impressive and the cost of cigarettes will only continue to go up. My children also felt the benefit of having more money and they are really pleased!

He said: “I can’t pretend the urge to smoke has gone away, but it’s definitely getting easier every day I don’t smoke.”

If you want to give up smoking or find out more about what help is available in Islington, search #Stoptober2016, or visit oneyouislington.org, www.smokefreeislington.nhs.uk

A Stoptober group is running every Thursday, starting September 29, at Islington Town Hall from 5:30pm-7pm. Call 0800 093 9030 to reserve your place.