We’re over the half way point in October, and anyone taking part in Stoptober may be feeling the strain.
People who have given up smoking for the month have lasted 21 days, and for some the craving for nicotine can be too much to handle.
But Blackpool’s director of health has some advice.
Dr Arif Rajpura said: “What we know is that if people can give up for 28 days then they are five times more likely to stay smoke free.
“So if we can get people to continue to stop smoking for the month of October it really does improve their chances of quitting.
“Smoking is a really important issue for Blackpool particularly where we have high rates compared to the rest of the country.
“On average, 30 per cent of adults in Blackpool smoke, and in certain parts of Blackpool, like Bloomfield for example, it’s increased to 50 per cent.
“That’s significantly higher than the nation average of 21 per cent of adults smoking.
“Smoking is a massive issue so I have encouraged as many people as possible to give Stoptober a go.”
Dr Rajpura has advised Stoptober-goers to make use of the NHS Stop Smoking services if they were finding quitting tough.
“Let us help you to give up,” he said. “It’s really important that people don’t give up on giving up.
“People often don’t give up on their first attempt but it’s important that they are encouraged to keep trying.”
Dr Rajpura said quitting was “win-win”, as when they are not smoking people are healthier and they are saving money.
Dr Rajpura added: “We know that smoking remains the biggest cause of premature death in England with 100,000 lives lost each year as a result of smoking.
“People who are no longer smoking will feel a lot better in themselves. They’ll find they can exercise better and will taste food a lot better.
“There are so many benefits to stopping smoking.
“Anyone who is continuing with Stoptober needs congratulating.
“Quitting is no mean feat and we understand how difficult it is.”
If you need help quitting contact Blackpool Stop Smoking Service at Whitegate Medical Centre on 01253 651570.