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28 September 2015

The Stoptober smoke-free challenge is back

People stood by the Stoptober stand.

Our team will be on hand to support people through this difficult challenge and provide the necessary encouragement to enable people to quit.

Keith Humphries

The 60,000 Smokers in Wiltshire are being encouraged to take the Stoptober Challenge and quit smoking for 28 days this October.

The campaign, which runs throughout October, is asking smokers to think about stopping now, and to sign up to quit for 28 days from Thursday (1 October 2015). People will receive support direct to their inbox or mobile phone to help them succeed in what is well known to be a tough task.

More than three quarters of a million people have already taken part in the nation's biggest attempt to quit since it began and research shows that stopping smoking for 28 days means you're five times more likely to stop for good.

By signing up to Stoptober, people will receive a variety of free and proven support including packs, apps and emails to help quit for 28 days and beyond.

People might also find smoking medicines useful and their local stop smoking advisor will be able to help them choose the right one that suits them best.

Keith Humphries, Wiltshire Council cabinet member for public health, said: "Our team will be on hand to support people through this difficult challenge and provide the necessary encouragement to enable people to quit.

"The health benefits will be noticeable very quickly and hopefully the campaign will encourage people to stop smoking for the long-term."

Wayne Hogarth a 49 year old heating engineer and father-of-seven from Wiltshire is urging others to follow his success, and quit for good.  Wayne Hogarth attended a stop smoking clinic in Trowbridge where he received information about products which could help him and had his carbon monoxide levels tested.  Wayne finally smoked his last cigarette in January and with the help of the stop smoking medicine recommended by his prescriber, he has never looked back.

Wayne said, "I remember thinking that if I quit life would never be the same… but it is better!"
This is the fourth year of Stoptober, which is run in partnership with Public Health England. Last year, more than 2,500 smokers in Wiltshire signed up for Stoptober and nationally 65% of those who took part succeeded in staying smoke-free for the entire 28 days.

The start of Stoptober this year coincides with the introduction of new legislation in England and Wales making it illegal to smoke in vehicles with someone under the age of 18 present. Both the driver and the smoker can be fined if anyone smokes in the vehicle.

The law is changing to protect children from the dangers of second hand smoke and will come into effect on 1 October. Every time a child breathes in second hand smoke, they breathe in thousands of chemicals, which put them at risk of serious conditions including meningitis, cancer, and respiratory infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia.

For advice and support along the way people should call 0300 003 4562, email wiltsstopsmoking@nhs.net or visit the Wiltshire Stop Smoking website.

More information about Stoptober can be found at the Stoptober website.

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