ISN’T it time you gave up cigarettes?
That’s a question Wigan’s tobacco lovers might be hearing rather a lot of this week as local health chiefs exhort them to kick the habit on Wednesday’s National No Smoking Day.
One in five Wiganers still smokes and only half of quitters managed to stay off the deadly weed, according to statistics last year.
That is why medical experts in the borough are lending their support to the campaign and say help is at hand for those who want to quit.
Prof Kate Ardern, director of public health at Wigan Council, said: “We fully support No Smoking Day and I want to make it absolutely clear to anyone thinking about quitting that we will help and support you as best we can. About half of all regular smokers will die as a result of smoking and this is why it is so important we support smokers to quit for good
“Smoking is the single biggest cause of “preventable” deaths in Wigan borough. In 2009, 606 residents died prematurely because of smoking. Figures from Tobacco Free Futures estimates there are 56,951 smokers in Wigan and smoking tobacco costs £94m through loss of productivity due to early death and illness, NHS costs, litter and fires.
“Every day a person goes without smoking adds as much as six hours to their life - that equals seven days over four weeks. Quitting smoking will not only improve your health, and your family’s health, but it will also save you money - potentially up to £55 a week.
“To get support today, either contact the Wigan Stop Smoking Service on 01942 481712, pop into your local pharmacy or visit your GP. All can give advice, support and approved stop smoking medication on prescription.”
For more information on No Smoking Day visit www.nosmokingday.org.uk