A local NHS Trust is encouraging smokers to stub out the habit and enjoy the extra cash in their pockets.
A ten a day smoker who decides to quit could save £1,200 per year- working out as a six per-cent of their annual salary based on UK averages.
And with tobacco prices set to rise even further, experts from Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust say there’s never been a better time to quit.
Rachel Northen from Leeds Stop Smoking Service said, “Today not only marks National No Smoking Day, but it is also Budget Day, a timely reminder to smokers of not only the obvious health dangers, but the financial impacts of the habit.
“Stopping smoking can be extremely challenging, but we want the people of Leeds to know that help is at hand at one of our 40 clinics across the city. Our expert staff use a combination of stop smoking treatments and support to break habits and deal with cravings, making you four times more likely to be successful in quitting than if you try on your own.”
Mark Scott from Rodley quit smoking six weeks ago after attending an NHS Stop Smoking drop in clinic in Armley and is already noticing both financial and health benefits.
Mark said, “I’ve been to the clinic three times before but I wasn’t fully ready to stop smoking. I felt a bit embarrassed about going back again, but the advisors were very welcoming. I’ve been going to the gym and when I was smoking I used to get breathless which limited how much I could do. Since quitting it’s much easier to keep going and I’m feeling much fitter and healthier. I had my carbon monoxide levels checked at the stop smoking clinic and seeing them reduce was really motivating.
“I felt like a prisoner to cigarettes. I spent every day thinking about when I could next have one and felt stressed if I couldn’t smoke. It’s great to be free of that feeling, and I’ve saved over £360 since quitting so a nice holiday is not far away.”
Smoking rates have declined rapidly in England with latest figures showing a fall of more than a third from 27 per-cent of adults smoking in 1998 to 16.9 per-cent in 2015. Despite this, Yorkshire and the Humber has the highest adult smoking rate in the country, with 20 per-cent of adults in the region smoking.
Leeds Stop Smoking Service also offers free support and advice to pregnant woman and their families, people with mental health problems and young people. There are a range of options for accessing the support, including one to one sessions, group sessions, evening drop in clinics, telephone support and home visits. An interpreter service can also be provided if required.
For more information on the Leeds Stop Smoking Service, call 0800 169 4219, text SMOKEFREE to 60066 or visit www.leedscommunityhealthcare.nhs.uk/smoking
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