Caritas Anchor House

Working at the heart of homelessness

Join the 28 day stop smoking challenge

Our News in Brief

Join the 28 day stop smoking challenge

1st October 2013

Smoking is the single biggest killer in the UK. According to Public Health England figures published this September, 232 smoking related deaths were recorded in Newham alone over the past 12 months.

Research shows you can live longer by giving up smoking and that’s why, this October, Anchor House is encouraging our staff, residents and members of the community to consider taking the 28 day Stoptober challenge. With thousands of participants every year, Stoptober helps people to stop smoking by challenging them to go ‘smokefree’ for four weeks – after which they’re five times more likely to give up smoking altogether.

We're getting more and more evidence of the benefits of stopping. Experts say, someone who quits smoking for Stoptober and doesn't smoke again could gain an extra seven days of life every 28 days, for the rest of their life. Also, after 48 hours, there's no nicotine in the body, which should improve your ability to taste and smell. After 72 hours, breathing becomes easier and coughs, wheezing and breathing problems improve three to nine months after quitting. The longer you stay smokefree, the more dramatic the health benefits are: after five years, your risk of heart attacks falls to about half that of a smoker's - and after ten years, it's the same as that of someone who has never smoked.

As well as all the health benefits, quitting can save the average smoker almost £2,000 a year. During last year's Stoptober campaign, an estimated £25 million was saved by 160,000 people who stopped buying cigarettes. Also, shockingly, it is estimated smokers and their related illnesses cost the NHS up to £2.7 billion a year.

Anchor House’s Recovery Café de Novo on Sunday was centred around Stoptober, with a team from Newham Stop Smoking Service visiting to sign people up for the event and let them know where they could receive support. All attendees were offered a free carbon monoxide reading. About 5% of the average cigarette puff is carbon monoxide, a toxic gas that passes into the blood stream and stops oxygen bonding with red blood cells.

For more information, please visit the official Stoptober website, where you can find advice and information and tools to help you quit, along with the location of a stop smoking service near you.

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