Smokers in Trafford encouraged to seek stress-free support

Quitting smoking doesn’t have to be stressful, residents are being told by Trafford health chiefs on No Smoking Day (Wednesday 10 March).

Giving up smoking is often seen as a difficult challenge but help is at hand and there are big benefits to quitting.

In Trafford, smokers are able to get advice and support to stop smoking from GPs or pharmacies. GPs are also able to offer prescription medication such as Champix, this reduces cravings and withdrawal from nicotine.

An e-cigarette scheme is also in place for Trafford smokers looking to quit. Smokers who attend a participating pharmacy will have a consultation with an advisor to understand more about their current smoking behaviour, and will be given a free four-week starter e-cigarette kit. Regular support will be offered through the pharmacy, with further consultations after two and four weeks.

A previous scheme in 2019 resulted in 230 people quitting smoking and reporting better physical and mental health. One participant said:

“The advisors really helped me because you can sit and speak to them and it doesn’t matter how long you sit there for - they are really understanding.”

There are massive benefits to giving up smoking. Those who have quit for more than six weeks have seen improvements in their mental health, while smoking also increases the risk of picking up infections and suffering Coronavirus symptoms may also be more severe for smokers.

From 2016 to 2018, 304 Trafford residents died each year from smoking attributable causes, and sadly around 394 children take up smoking a year in Trafford. The borough’s appetite for quitting is looking up with the number of smokers in Trafford dropping from 13.5% of the population in 2018 to 9.1% in 2019.

Councillor Jane Slater, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Health and Wellbeing, said:

“There are around 24,000 smokers in Trafford but there is hope and support for every one of them that wants to give up.

We know that the pandemic will have inspired a lot of people to quit. The health benefits of giving up start almost straight away and there’s also the financial benefits to giving up too.

In Trafford, we will always encourage and support people to make healthy choices so I would urge people to get the help they need to quit today.”

To find out more on how you can find support to quit smoking, visit the NHS website.

You can access the e-cigarette scheme through C&T Pharmacy, Empire Pharmacy, Harry’s Pharmacy, Limelight Pharmacy, Malcolms Pharmacy and Mary Davey Chemists.

Posted on Tuesday 9th March 2021