What is Stoptober?


September 25, 2020

What is Stoptober?


Now entering its 9th year, Stoptober is a nationwide effort encouraging the nation’s smokers to attempt quitting smoking for the month of October and maintaining thereafter. Evidence shows that attitudes towards smoking are shifting – the year on year rate of smokers in the UK falling the past 8 years and in the year 2018-19, around 300,000 people quit smoking (www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/adultsmokinghabitsingreatbritain)

There is research and evidence which suggests that if one quits for 28 Days, they are 5 times more likely to quit for good (insight into why our service is named 28 Days :)

Professor Kevin Fenton, National Director of Health and Well-being for PHE said:

“While it is amazing that there are over twice as many ex-smokers as current smokers in England there are still over 7 million people regularly lighting up.

Alongside unhealthy diet, smoking is the biggest cause of preventable early death in England, accounting for over 78,000 deaths a year.Quitters will soon see they have reduced blood pressure, easier breathing and better circulation. Stopping smoking is the best thing a smoker can do to improve their health.”


Along with the primary aim, the campaign led by Public Health England, this year will focus on promoting healthier behaviour all round, you’ll see lots of ‘Better Health’branding and materials, which looks to support a national health reset in light of the challenging COVID-19 situation and the shift in the behaviours around health. There has really never been a better time to quit smoking then now - we have seen over a million people quit smoking since the lockdown began in March (ash.org.uk/press-release/pandemicmillion/) the nature of the virus prompting a change in the habit which directly impact the lungs. To go a little further, taking stock of overall lifestyle, health and well-being is also vital now. Using October can be a strong opportunity to really evaluate our habits and choices, especially with many others going through the process of quitting smoking, there is a sense of community and solidarity with folks in the same boat, adding to the motivation to keep going.    


Dr Gina Radford, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, said:

“While we know that quitting smoking is not easy, this Stoptober is a perfect time to try again. The best thing a smoker can do for their health is to stop smoking.There is more help and support available now than ever before.”

And it’s important to know that if you are considering making a quit attempt in October, you are not on your own and willpower alone is not the only option –there are a number of support tools and services ready and waiting to join your journey for the month and beyond. Why not get in touch with the 28 Days team to discuss further – designed in the digital age with consideration for all working schedules, the service is completely remote with flexible out of hours provision (Monday-Thursday 8am-8pm, Friday 8am-5pm & Saturday 9am-1pm).


You can call on 03301 244 648 or visit our website here: https://www.28days.org.uk/take-the-challenge. You’ll receive a call from one of our quit coaches within 2 working days


If you area HR executive or in charge of employee well-being at your company, there are several options tailored to workplaces which may be suitable for your organisation: https://www.28days.org.uk/workplace-challenge