A Droylsden man has quit his 20-a-day smoking habit thanks to the dedicated support from a local health and wellbeing service.
Delvin Stewart, 38, got in touch with Be Well Tameside, run by Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust, in order to quit in time for his wedding to Rebecca on 16 September 2016.
Delvin, who works as a HGV driver started smoking occasionally when he was 13 years old, but his habit progressed from there to more than 20-a-day.
At their peak, Delvin and his wife Rebecca would spend over £70 a week between them on cigarettes, with Delvin himself spending an estimated £43,800* on smoking over the years.
Delvin said: “There were the obvious health reasons, but both myself and Rebecca wanted to quit so we could save up some money for our wedding and a holiday.”
While trying to complete his stop smoking programme, Delvin was fortunate enough to win a £25,000 wedding through a competition in a local newspaper, which made him even more determined to kick the habit.
“With the newspaper photographers being there we wanted to look our best and we wanted to enjoy the day without going out for a cigarette all the time.”
Delvin said that he has tried to quit at least ten times in the past, using patches inhalers and e-cigarettes, but was never able to stop entirely.
So Delvin contacted Be Well Tameside for support, who offered him an appointment to fit his work schedule and recommended varenicline to help him quit.
Delvin said: “The service looked at all my needs, like my home-life, stress and employment, to build a picture of my frame of mind and set me up with the best chance to be successful.
“Along with the treatment, the service is always available to check your progress, or help to stop you from relapsing, even long after you’re smoke-free.”
Lobna Begum-Haris, Specialist Stop Smoking Lead with Be Well Tameside, said: “We are delighted we could help Delvin to be smoke-free in time for his big day and we will continue to offer him support to help him remain smoke-free.
“As it’s Stoptober it’s a great opportunity for all smokers to make a commitment to quit, but remember that you’re more likely to succeed if you seek professional help - like that available from Be Well Tameside.”
Figures from Public Health England show that 2,965 people in Tameside were admitted to hospital with smoking related conditions between April 2014 and March 2015.
Tameside Council Executive Member Cllr Ged Cooney, responsible for health, said: “Stoptober is a great opportunity for smokers across to quit together alongside friends, family and thousands of other people in our area.
“As an ex smoker myself, I can say from personal experience that the benefits are many when you stop. It’s not easy - but the support that’s available really helps. It doesn’t matter how many times you have tried before – you should never give up on trying to stop.”
You can also follow the service on Twitter @BeWellTameside and like them on Facebook by searching ‘Be Well Tameside’.