Stoptober, the biggest stop smoking challenge of its kind, is returning next month and residents who smoke in Lewisham are being encouraged to consider signing up for it now.
Launched in 2012, Stoptober is the 28-day stop smoking challenge from Public Health England that encourages and supports smokers across England towards quitting for good.
The Lewisham Stop Smoking Service supported 1573 people to stop smoking last year and is in the top five services in London for quit dates set and quits achieved.
Marc Rowland, a local GP and chair of NHS Lewisham Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said local people could sign up to Stoptober now and start preparing to quit smoking from 1 October.
"If you can stop smoking for 28 days, you are five times more likely to stay smoke free," he said.
"You can sign up for Stoptober now and start planning your quitting journey, along with the thousands of others who are expected to quit on 1 October.
"There are a range of free tools available that provide proven support to help you quit smoking during Stoptober.
"These include face to face support, a support pack, an app, emails and texts and you just need to pick the tools that suit you.
"If you smoke, giving up is probably the biggest single step you can take to improve your health and I'd encourage anyone who wants to give up smoking to sign up for Stoptober."
More than 250,000 smokers across England and Wales were estimated to have stubbed out their cigarettes for Stoptober in 2014
Smoking is responsible for one in every five deaths in adults aged over 35 in England, and half of all long-term smokers will die prematurely due to a smoking-related disease.
Giving up smoking increases your chances of living a longer and healthier life, even if you've smoked for 40 years. The Lewisham Stop Smoking team are holding
drop-in sessions at Lewisham Shopping Centre (by Muffin Break) every Monday
from 1 − 4 pm, from 21st September for eight weeks. For more information contact Lewisham Stop Smoking Service on 0800 0820 388, text 07522 679 249, email, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.smokefreelewisham.co.uk.
To sign up for Stoptober, simply search 'Stoptober' in your search engine.