Get involved! Send photos, video, news & views. Text SWINDON NEWS to 80360 or email us
Quitting ciggies is a breath of fresh air
7:10pm Sunday 13th October 2013 in News
QUITTER Ashleigh-Jane Russell can sleep lying down now she has stubbed out her smoking habit.
The 21-year-old cleaning operative from Gorse Hill is also now in the money after kicking the habit in June, and was able to buy herself a new mobile phone.
She said: “When I smoked I couldn’t lay down flat without starting coughing. That has stopped now and if I get a cold it doesn’t last so long or go onto my chest, like it did before. The health issues of smoking sneak up on you – it’s only when you give up that you really notice the difference. I’m so glad I did it now.”
Ashleigh’s main reason for giving up was the cost, as even though she smoked roll-ups, the prices continued to rise.
She said: “I gave it up before but I only ever lasted a week, so this time I decided to go to the doctor to go to the Stop Smoking advisors.
“I was supposed to get patches but because I have sensitive skin I went for the inhaler instead.
“At first it was difficult but it just got easier. It gets easier after a few weeks.
“At first I was a bit addicted to energy drinks and had to keep myself really busy to stop thinking about it, but now things have settled down back to normal. The Stop Smoking service has been a big help.
“After two weeks I found I didn’t need it any more. It’s really just about breaking the habit. I would still carry it around but hours would go by and I would realise that I hadn’t had a cigarette.”
Ashleigh’s 15 to 20-a-day habit started when she was just 13.
She said: “I tried it in my lunch break. It was the usual story – peer pressure, wanting to be cool. I only smoked a few a day, but over the years the number crept up. When I was working as a sales assistant, I did it with workmates during breaks to help pass the time.
“I tried quitting before when I was 16 before I went to college because I couldn’t afford it, but I started again when my Dad died.
“Dad smoked, so doing it made me feel closer to him. I had also left college and was working, so could afford it more.”
Ashleigh has now been able to buy herself a new phone, and has started cycling and is a lot more active She said: “I’ve got lots more energy and can do so many things without getting breathless. This time I’ve definitely quit for good because it’s even harder if you go back to it. Although it’s a personal decision and has got to come from within, I do encourage friends to quit, but I wouldn’t pressure anybody into doing it, they have to take the decision themselves, maybe if it costs too much or if they want a healthier lifestyle.”
One in every five adults in Swindon still smoke, despite it being the UK’s biggest preventable killer with someone dying from a smoking related illness every six seconds.
But research shows that those who stop for 28 days are five times more likely to stop for good, and Public Health England’s Stoptober campaign, now in its second year, is encouraging smokers to give it up this month.
Last year, 160,000 people across the country quit for good during Stoptober, and this year more than 216,000 smokers have signed up so far.
Smokers who register get a free stop-smoking pack, have access to a mobile phone app and can hop online to social media sites Facebook and Twitter and join in the conversation with other quitters facing the challenge together.
For more information about the stop smoking service or to book an appointment to make your first step towards becoming smoke free, visit www.seqol.org/community-health-services/stop-smoking, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call or text 01793 465513 or 0800 3892229 or 07881 281797. For more information about Stoptober, visit stoptober.smokefree.nhs.uk.
Comments are closed on this article.