I will never smoke again – Stoptober case study

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It is 8 weeks now since I quit and it is the best thing I have ever done. I will never smoke again.

Barry Leonard quit smoking with the help of a Stop Smoking Practitioner from Somerset County Council’s stop smoking service, Smokefreelife Somerset. He attended a support group at Victoria Park Community Centre.

He talks here about his desire for better health and his motivation to stop smoking to be around for his children and grandchildren.

I decided to stop smoking for my health and to be around for my children and grandchildren.

 I was diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and I already had asthma which I have to use inhalers for.

I walked to my first appointment at Victoria Park, which isn’t far, I had to stop on the way to sit down and catch my breath. Once I got there I had to sit and get my breath back before I could start the session. I couldn’t even put my shoes on without having to have a break as I was so breathless bending down to my feet.

I was smoking as soon as I woke up with my cup of tea and then on breaks at work. I had to have breaks during work in the hot weather because I was getting so breathless there too. My partner was really worried about my health.

I chose to use the patches to help with my cravings, but I have actually found it much easier than I thought I would. I haven’t had any cravings at all. At work I just started staying in the canteen rather than going out to the smoking area, but now I can be around others smoking and it doesn’t bother me at all.

I noticed pretty quickly that my breathing was getting better, and I could walk upstairs without being out of breath. Lots of people have been telling me how much better I look, I’ve got colour in my face again. Everything has started to taste so much better too. I had a pie the other day that tasted absolutely amazing!

I have been through a really stressful week recently and thought to myself if I was going to smoke then that would have been the time, but I didn’t. I managed to get through it without any urges to smoke at all.

The group at Victoria Park is so helpful. I really look forward to coming each week and seeing how everybody else is getting on as well. My carbon monoxide reading was 18 when I first came and now it is right down to 1 which is really great to see every week.

It is 8 weeks now since I quit and it is the best thing I have ever done. I will never smoke again.

Do you want help to quit smoking?

Smokefreelife Somerset’s expert and supportive Stop Smoking Practitioners are here to support you in a non-judgemental and friendly way.

It is quick, easy and FREE to book onto the Smokefreelife Somerset quit smoking programme just give your details over the phone or fill in a quick online form:

01823 356222https://www.healthysomerset.co.uk/smokefree/support-me/