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Be Well Tameside helps Kurt quit smoking for good

A Tameside resident who successfully stopped smoking after suffering a heart attack and other health conditions is urging others to also quit the habit.

Kurt Hopwood, 51, from Ashton-under-Lyne successfully stubbed out his smoking habit with the support of Be Well Tameside.

He is sharing his story to help highlight No Smoking Day, which took place on March 13 and is an opportunity for smokers to begin their quitting journey.

There are more than 5.3 million adults in England who still smoke, and smoking remains the single largest preventable cause of death in England. In fact, up to two in three smokers will die as a result of long-term smoking.

However, when you stop smoking, good things start to happen straight away. Quitting will allow you to start moving better, breathe more easily and give you more money to spend. After quitting smoking for one year, your chances of suffering from a heart attack are halved, compared to a smoker.

Kurt had previously attempted to quit smoking but found it difficult due to a lack of motivation, but with the support and advice from Be Well Tameside, along with motivation from family and friends, he realised his goals were achievable and could envision his future being smoke-free.

Be Well Tameside offered support through regular telephone appointments, where they discussed the barriers Kurt had previously experienced, and therefore explored the potential alternatives to getting Kurt back onto the right path.

Kurt had previously tried patches but they had caused irritation. Be Well helped him to find alternative patches that didn’t cause any issues. This fuelled Kurt to find the strength to persevere, and when his cravings became intense, he would use nicotine gum too.

Kurt said: “I am extremely grateful for the advice and support given to me through my scheduled phone appointments with Be Well Tameside, combined with the support from people around me. I found the motivation to carry on and become smoke-free.

“From quitting smoking I’ve gotten my taste buds back, so I’m enjoying my food and meals a lot more.

“My family and friends have also commented on what a positive difference this has made to my mood, as I’m in good spirits and feel as though I’m in a much better place in my life now that I’ve stopped smoking, thanks to Be Well Tameside.”

There is a wide range of stop smoking support available for smokers wanting to quit through Be Well Tameside, which can massively boost a smoker’s chances of quitting for good. 

People who live, work or have a GP in Tameside can access free, flexible, face-to-face or telephone support through Be Well Tameside, as well as getting six months free access to 24/7 stop smoking support through the Greater Manchester Smokefree App. Stop smoking support can also be accessed by speaking to your GP or local pharmacy.

Tameside Council Executive Member for Population Health and Wellbeing Councillor Eleanor Wills said: “I’d like to thank Kurt for sharing his inspiring journey and experience with our excellent service, Be Well Tameside. From hearing stories like Kurt’s it can really encourage others to take the first steps to starting their smoke-free journey.

“So, if you would like the additional support please do get in touch with Be Well Tameside, as they can provide that guidance that can make a difference to your life.”

If you would like to contact Be Well Tameside you can email them at bewelltameside@tameside.gov.uk or you can call them on 0161 342 5050. You can also visit their website here.

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