Caroline and Roy have both had success in quitting with our support. Here are their stories:
When Caroline found herself short of breath while climbing the stairs, she decided it was time to tackle her 20-a-day smoking habit. The 48-year-old had given up several times before, but had always ended up slipping back into old ways and reaching for a packet of cigarettes. Determined that this time would be different, she called CAMQUIT, Cambridgeshire’s Stop Smoking Service, to ask for help.
"I had been smoking for more than 30 years and was starting to get health problems," said Catherine, who lives in Cambridge with her husband and three children. "I was getting short of breath, which was giving me problems getting up the stairs. I’d given up before and once lasted for six months but somehow just ended up starting again. I think the support I received from my stop smoking advisor Ellen made the difference this time around."
During her first appointment with CAMQUIT, Catherine discussed all of the help available through the service, which includes dedicated support, nicotine replacement therapy and medication such as Champix and Zyban. As patches had worked for Catherine in the past, she decided to try them a second time. "I really think that Ellen helped me so much," said Caroline. "She wasn’t judgemental and didn’t ever tell me what to do, but was there to support me and listen. I think that’s what made the difference this time. I talked to her about all of my different options, and we decided to try patches as they had worked for me in the past. Ellen also gave me a little inhaler for times when I needed a quick nicotine hit, but I found the patches worked well on their own so didn’t need to use it often."
Nearly six months on and Caroline, who works as a housekeeping manager, is reaping the benefits to her health, and has even swapped her car for a bike so that she can use pedal power to get to work. She added: "I’m noticing the health benefits and am exercising more and have now started cycling, whereas before I was lazy and used to take the car. I am a bit bigger, but I don’t mind that as the other health benefits outweigh a bit of weight gain. I’d advise anyone else thinking of giving up to just go for it and give it a try. It’s scary to think that you might fail, but there’s nothing wrong with failing as long as you keep trying again. And if you don’t try, you’ll never know."
Think you will never quit smoking? Well think again. Roy from March in Cambridgeshire has quit smoking after being heavily addicted for 55 years. Roy, who is now 70, started smoking when he was 15 years of age. "They were so cheap back then that I started in the Royal Navy and you could use your stamps and get 100 cigarettes for a pound," he says. Roy’s wife quit smoking a few years ago and Roy decided now is the right time for him – he was worried about how his smoking might be affecting his wife and how much money it was costing. Roy only wished he had given it a go earlier! Referred to the CAMQUIT service by his local GP, Roy met with Alice Parr, stop smoking advisor, who supported him throughout his quit attempt. "I couldn’t have done it without Alice – having her support was very important," he says. "I didn’t want to let her down, which was a great help."
"When I first met Roy he was a heavy smoker, but he was motivated to quit," comments Alice. I really enjoyed chatting with Roy and I am so pleased he has quit smoking." Roy used Champix, a stop-smoking medication, to support his quit attempt. Roy described how he feels like a new person since he quit smoking. He is breathing better, doesn’t cough or wheeze anymore, and his blood pressure score is now in a healthy range. His wife commented: "I didn’t think he would do it, you know, but I am so proud that he has done, as he is so much better for it." Roy is saving all the money he used to spend on cigarettes so he can take his wife on a holiday next year.
Congratulations Roy, we are very happy for you that you have quit smoking and the CAMQUIT team are very proud that they helped you to quit.