While this figure can look daunting, don’t let it put you off a quit attempt. Just because stopping smoking is tough, doesn’t mean it isn’t worth achieving. Instead, approach quitting smoking like any big challenge, be prepared and think of all the ways you can maximise your chance of success.
One way to improve your chance of quitting, is by thinking about the timing of your quit attempt. In this respect, a great option is to join the Stoptober challenge run by the NHS and Public Health England every October.
The Stoptober challenge is a stop smoking challenge that encourages smokers to give-up smoking for 28 days. Every year thousands of smokers give the challenge a go, making it the nation’s biggest quit smoking attempt.2
So, if you are one of the 7 out of 10 smokers that want to quit smoking,3 here are 5 ways making a quit attempt this Stoptober can improve your chances of stopping smoking for good.
1. Plenty of quit smoking support
Quitting cold-turkey is tough. If you have made a quit smoking attempt previously you’ll probably know exactly how hard it can be to resit the cravings that come from quitting smoking.
In fact, only 3-5% of smokers who quit cold turkey are able to quit smoking long-term.4 As a result, a key part of the Stoptober campaign is to provide smokers the tools they need to quit. This means throughout the Stoptober campaign you’ll find you have access to plenty of resources to help you in your quitting journey.
This includes everything from advice on quit smoking products, to daily emails and a personalised quit smoking plan
Alternatively, if you are looking for year-round support, using your local stop smoking service can make you four times more likely to quit successfully.5
2. You’ll be quitting smoking with others
Quitting with others can be a great way to give you that extra bit of support when the cravings hit. You might choose to ask a friend to join you in quitting this Stoptober, or you can take advantage of the Stoptober online community and chatbot available through the Stoptober website. Whatever your approach, sharing the experience can be a good source of extra motivation.
Another advantage of quitting with others is that telling people about your quit attempt will make you more likely to stick to it. It might feel safer not to tell anyone about quitting, so that no one knows if you give up. But telling a friend, or even a total stranger on the internet, about giving up smoking is a great way to stay on track.
3. Easier to avoid smoking triggers
One of the hardest parts of quitting smoking can be going to events or doing activities in which you would normally smoke with others. This could be weddings, parties or just going out for drinks. The chances are you might strongly associate these activities with smoking and seeing others smoke at them could trigger a smoking relapse.
During Stoptober, 16-18% of smokers in the UK are making a quit attempt, so there are less people smoking and as a result less temptation. If you have a friend who is quitting smoking with you, you can even make alternative plans to avoid these trigger situations altogether.
This change in behaviour doesn’t have to be permanent, it can be used just to help manage smoking cravings until the worst of the urges have passed.
4. Quit for 28 days, quit for good
The Stoptober challenge is based on research that shows if you stop-smoking for 28 days then you are five times more likely to quit smoking for good.
The challenge works by breaking down the quitting process into 28 days to make it more manageable. You can even sign-up for 28 days of emails from the NHS for day-by-day stop smoking advice during this period.
If quitting smoking for good feels like too big a step at the moment, Stoptober also gives a clear start-day and end-day. So even if you continue smoking after Stoptober ends, you can have the satisfaction of knowing you completed your set goal rather than feeling disappointed that you started smoking again.
If you can complete the Stoptober challenge, you might even feel more confident about taking on a bigger challenge afterwards and taking the next step towards a smoke-free life.
5. Stoptober works
Each year thousands of people quit with Stoptober. The public awareness, community support, and advice on what tools and products can help you quit smoking means Stoptober works.
The success of the challenge is in the numbers. Since starting in 2012, Stoptober has encouraged over 1 million quit attempts. And, in the first Stoptober campaign alone, over eight thousand people stopped smoking permanently.7
So join in this October and become one of the thousands who have quit through Stoptober.