Send us your pictures, video, news and views by texting DST to 80360 or email us
‘I was a heart attack waiting to happen...’
A NORTH-EAST mother who gave up smoking after more than 40 years is encouraging others to give quitting a go on the day a new Governmentbacked campaign gets under way.
Lyn Fenton, 66, from Darlington, was shocked into quitting smoking when her GP told her she was a “heart attack waiting to happen”.
Now Ms Fenton feels happier and healthier after quitting smoking last year on her son’s birthday. She says her local NHS stop smoking service helped to make it a positive experience and is encouraging others to quit during the campaign, known as Stoptober.
Stoptober is a 28-day initiative by the Department of Health and supported by Fresh, the North-East tobacco control agency, encouraging the region’s 460,000 smokers to make an attempt to quit today.
Research shows that people who stop smoking for 28 days are five times more likely to not smoke again. Friends, families, employers and work colleagues can also make a real difference.
Ms Fenton, who quit with the support of Durham and Darlington NHS Stop Smoking Service, said: “I’d been a smoker for more than 40 years and had tried to quit many times before.
“For whatever reason, I’d never been able to stop completely and it wasn’t until my doctor told me I was a heart attack waiting to happen that I decided enough was enough.
“I’d never considered what smoking was doing to my health, so to hear those words was a real wake-up call and it really frightened me into thinking about my family and how they’d cope without me.
“The day I decided to stop smoking for good was really memorable to me because it was my son’s birthday.
“I now feel so much better within myself after having quit smoking for longer than a year and no longer worry about my health. It really helped to have the encouragement of other people to help me every step of the way.”
During Stoptober, people will be able to take advantage of more free support than ever, including a Stoptober kit, a daily messaging service and quitting app for PCs and smartphones. To register, all you have to do is click on smokefree.nhs.uk/Stoptober/ To find out more about Stoptober, visit smokefree.nhs.uk/ stoptober, or for help to quit smoking visit your local stop smoking service or call NHS Smokefree on 0800-022-4332.
To follow Fresh on Facebook or Twitter, look for FreshSmokeFree.