Thinking about giving up smoking?

Published: 01 Mar 2017

Wednesday 8 March is No Smoking Day and to mark the event, Hertfordshire County Council is raising awareness of the benefits of e-cigarettes as an effective way to give up smoking tobacco.

Many people are still confused about the safety of e-cigarettes, with half of us wrongly thinking they are equally or more harmful than smoking and not realising the potential benefits.

However e-cigarettes are 95 per cent safer than smoking tobacco, cheaper than conventional cigarettes and twice as effective at helping people stop smoking as over the counter nicotine replacements.

Hertfordshire resident Sue Fleming made up her mind on her 50th birthday to give up smoking by using e-cigarettes, after her mother passed away from a smoking-related illness.

She said: “At first I was worried about making the switch because I wasn’t sure if e-cigarettes were safe, but Hertfordshire’s Stop Smoking Service helped me understand that e-cigarettes were far more beneficial to my health than continuing to smoke.

“The Stop Smoking Service was fantastic, really giving me the confidence to go for it and keeping me on track.

“I’m so pleased I gave up smoking, it’s made such an amazing difference to my health. Things taste much better, I go to the gym and do yoga now and I don’t get out of breath like I used to.”

Smoking is still the leading cause of death and disability in Hertfordshire, with around 1,500 smoking-related deaths in 2015 and estimated costs to the local economy of £288 million.

Hertfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, Localism and Libraries, Teresa Heritage, said: “We know that two thirds of smokers want to give up smoking but not all are ready to give up nicotine.

“Vaping isn’t for everyone, but e-cigarettes are much safer than smoking and can help people quit tobacco effectively. There’s no real risk to bystanders and while the vapour can be a nuisance for some, most vapers find ways of minimising that around others.

“With the help of our free Stop Smoking Services, you are four times more likely to kick the habit. Your health – and your bank balance – will thank you in the long run!”

Hertfordshire County Council has also developed a nationally-acclaimed model policy on the use of e-cigarettes, to help local organisations understand the evidence and regulation issues around e-cigarettes when developing policies of their own for staff and service users. It has already been well-received by organisations across the region.

For information about how Hertfordshire’s Stop Smoking Service can help you stop or reduce smoking, including advice about e-cigarettes, please text SMOKEFREE to 80818, call 0800 389 3 998 or visit 

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