#Readyforpregnancy - mums and mums to be urged to stop smoking during #Stoptober
Throughout the recent Covid-19 pandemic many people have taken a moment to stop and reflect on their health and wellbeing, deciding that it could be time to make some changes.
Stopping smoking is one of the best things you'll ever do for your health and your baby. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable illness, causing cancer, heart and lung disease. Smoking attacks the lungs, making it harder to breathe but when you stop, you give your lungs the chance to repair, plus there are lots of other benefits too - and they start almost immediately.
Over recent months both The Chief Medical Officer and Health Secretary have highlighted that smokers are at increased risk of chest infections which can often be more serious. This is because smoking harms the immune system, reducing the bodies’ natural protection against infections, like coronavirus. In fact smokers who are hospitalised with COVID-19 are more likely to suffer severe outcomes than non-smokers.
As part of our #ReadyforPregnancy campaign this October, we are highlighting support available to help you quit smoking before, during or after pregnancy. To access help contact your midwife, GP or pharmacist for help, support and advice on how to stop smoking and details of local support services.
In July analysis by ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) and UCL (University College London) found that over a million people in the UK had stopped smoking since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country and in addition a further 440,000 smokers had tried to quit during the period April – June 2020.
Many people try to quit smoking with willpower alone, but it's much easier with the right help. Research has shown that if you quit for 28 days, you're 5 times more likely to quit for good so why not take part in Stoptober.
You can also visit https://www.nhs.uk/better-health/quit-smoking/ where you can download the Stoptober app.
Top tips to help you give up
- List your reasons to quit.
- Tell people you're quitting.
- If you have tried to quit before, remember what worked.
- Use stop smoking aids.
- Have a plan if you are tempted to smoke.
- List your smoking triggers and how to avoid them.
- Keep cravings at bay by keeping busy.
- Exercise away the urge.
- Join the Facebook groupfor support and advice.
So are you ready for the challenge?
Ready to join thousands of others for Stoptober?
Once you have picked your quit date, remember to add it to your calendar then throw away all your cigarettes before you start. Remember, there is never "just 1 cigarette". Good Luck - You can do it!