Every year on 31 May National No Tobacco Day takes place and it gives smokers the perfect opportunity kick their bad habit.
The focus of World No Tobacco Day 2019 is on “tobacco and lung health.” The campaign will increase awareness on:
- The negative impact that tobacco has on people’s lung health, from cancer to chronic respiratory disease,
- The fundamental role lungs play for the health and well-being of all people.
There are plenty of treatments available which can help individuals beat the addiction and Doctors at Blackburn with Darwen and East Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are advising local residents on the best ways to stop smoking.
The most recently introduced treatment is e‑cigarettes, which are electronic devices that deliver nicotine in vapour and are available in a number of flavours. The devices contain nicotine but are without the most harmful substances which are found in cigarettes, such as tar and carbon monoxide.
Research shows that e‑cigarettes can help you stop smoking and, like all treatments, they are most effective if used with support from the NHS stop smoking service.
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) provides you with a low level of nicotine, without the tar and carbon monoxide. It can help reduce withdrawal effects, such as cravings, which may occur when you stop smoking.
NRT is available in a number of forms, including skin patches, chewing gum, tablets and nasal and mouth spray. They are all available on prescription and can be purchased from pharmacies and shops.
Both varenicline and bupropion are readily available via prescription. Varenicline reduces nicotine cravings and blocks the effects of smoking. Bupropion, which was originally used to treat depression, has since been found to help people quit smoking.
Dr Stuart Berry, GP lead for respiratory conditions at both CCGs said:
“I often come across smokers who haven’t tried e‑cigs because they are worried about their safety. E‑cigs are now considered to be 95% safer than normal cigarettes. Or to put it another way, they carry only 1/20th of the risk of smoking normal cigarettes.
“The charity “Cancer UK” has a useful webpage about them. Google “e‑cig + Cancer UK” to find it http://www.cancerresearchuk.org/about-cancer/causes-of-cancer/smoking-and-cancer/e‑cigarettes
“The NHS Choices website has some more information along with links to back up the 95% safer than cigarettes statement.
“The best case scenario is that people stop smoking all together – but if you don’t feel ready to quit smoking completely, try e‑cigs instead of regular fags.
“The best treatment for you will depend on your personal preference but I would suggest speaking to your GP practice for advice on which one is most suitable. Your local NHS stop smoking service will also provide plenty of support.”
You are four times more likely to stop smoking if you do this with support from a health professional. The patient offer is slightly different depending on where you live.
For support with quitting smoking in Lancashire telephone the #QuitSquad on 08003286297 or visit their website https://www.lancashirecare.nhs.uk/Stop-Smoking