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Smokers told smoke-free New Year is best antidote against poisonous cigarettes

04 January 2018

Make 2018 the year you give up for good. The Rochdale borough's 31,953 smokers are being encouraged to make a quit attempt this New Year to prevent poisons from tar in cigarettes entering the bloodstream, quickly spreading around the body and causing damage to major organs.

Rochdale Borough Council is backing Public Health England's (PHE) New Year Health Harms campaign which aims to encourage smokers to give up smoking with help from NHS Smokefree and local services.

Every cigarette smoked releases over 4,000 chemicals into the body, including more than 70 known cancer-causing compounds, cadmium - a metal used in batteries - and carbon monoxide.

Elevated levels of these substances in the bloodstream can lead to an increased risk of major damage to the body. For example exposure to cadmium for a long period of time can damage the kidneys and bones and carbon monoxide increases the risk of blood clots and coronary heart disease.

'There's lots of support out there to help you give up'

Research has shown that regularly smoking 20 or more cigarettes a day doubles the chances of developing kidney cancer when compared with a non-smoker.

This year's campaign, which found elevated levels of toxic substances in 7 lifelong smokers, including TV presenter and entrepreneur Hilary Devey, is now encouraging smokers to seek support to help them quit, which will start to improve the quality of their blood and rid them of harmful poisons.

Councillor Sara Rowbotham, the council's cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: "At the start of every year a lot of us make resolutions which can be difficult to stick to, even if we have the best intentions. So if you want to give up smoking this year don't worry, there's lots of support out there to help you succeed and you don't have to do it alone."

'Giving up smoking is the single biggest thing you can do to improve your health'

Andrea Fallon, the council's director of public health, said: "The New Year is a great time for making changes to improve our health. Smoking remains the biggest cause of long-term disease and early death in the UK and each year, over 500 people die too soon in our borough because of it.

"We know that giving up smoking is hard, and people might attempt to quit several times before they finally manage to kick the habit. The important thing is to keep trying, as giving up smoking is the single biggest thing you can do to improve your health and eventually you will achieve it. So if you are ready to make a change for you and your family by going smoke free during 2018, we have lots of different ways we can help you to to give up."

For free, proven support and a range of tools to help quit smoking: