Northumberland grandfather celebrates a year smokefree
10 Oct 2017
A Northumberland grandfather who is celebrating a year smokefree is encouraging others to quit smoking this Stoptober.
Alan White, 67, from Ashington, stopped smoking last year with support from the Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking service. He attended sessions at one of the clinics in Ashington where he discussed options with the staff on how to stop.
Alan quit smoking to support his wife after she was taken ill last September suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Alan, a retired miner, said: “It was such a shock to me, she went to see the doctor and he called an ambulance straight away.
“I took the decision to stop smoking as soon as she was taken ill.
“I think I was always aware of the risks, but had become desensitised. Then when you see something like that happen it really hits you.
“I went along to the stop smoking clinic with my wife and I have never looked back. I would definitely recommend the service to others. Our stop smoking adviser gave both of us total encouragement and support every step of the way, and she went out of her way to arrange appointments in a place and time that was convenient for both of us.
“Since I stopped smoking I feel a lot fitter and I can do more at my allotment. My breathing is a lot better and I no-longer have a cough. I sleep better as well.”
Alan used a non-nicotine medication which is a 12-week course of tablets used to help adults stop smoking. The medication helps reduce the craving and withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping smoking.
It is one of a range of treatments people can access when they contact their local NHS Stop Smoking Service for support.
Northumberland County Councillor Veronica Jones, cabinet member for Adult Wellbeing and Health, said: “We know that smokers are more likely to succeed in their quit attempt if they receive support and I would encourage people to take advantage of the range of free support available to them in Northumberland.”
The Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking Service is provided by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. Clinics are available in a range of venues including GP practices, pharmacies and community centres. Some out of hours clinics are also available for those who find it difficult to attend appointments during the day.
Stop Smoking Adviser Amanda Young said: “Alan and his wife have done really well and I hope this encourages others to come to the service for free friendly advice and support. We can advise on different treatments, the use of e-cigarettes, and what to do to stop the cravings.”
For more information on stopping smoking and Northumberland NHS Stop Smoking Service call 01670 813135 or visit www.northumbria.nhs.uk/stopsmoking