Judith started smoking at 16 after a tobacconist came into her office giving out free, promotional packs of cigarettes, back then - smoking was sold as being good for you! After 50 years of smoking, Judith had a heart attack and decided it was time to give up the cigarettes for good.

Judith is now smokefree after visiting Yorkshire Smokefree Calderdale. We asked her some questions to find out more about her smoking journey and why she quit: 

Do you remember why you started smoking?

It was the mid 60's and seen as a cool thing to do as back then everyone smoked. 

I recall working above a tobacconist/sweet shop and the lady who worked in the shop below once came into my work place offering out free sample packs. I remember the sample packs coming in packs of five and for a time the main tobacconist would give these sort of promotional cigarettes away from time to time.

I guess it worked as I've only just stopped smoking 50 years later. 

What were your reasons for quitting?

The biggest reason I would say was due to 7.5 weeks ago I guess you could say smoking caught up with me as I had a heart attack and I'm sure smoking had a lot to do with it.

Did you use stop smoking products to help you quit?

E-cigarette and 15mg Nicorette patch.

7.5 weeks quit and no longer feel like I need my patches but have continued to use my e-cigarette.

How helpful did you find them?

VERY HELPFUL, when you've smoked as long as I have I don't believe I would have been able to stop without products.

I don't think it would be easy to stop smoking without help as I've found both group support and stop smoking products helpful.

Apart from medication, what else helped you to quit and stay smokefree? 

Fear of another heart attack and also the support I have had from the stop smoking service. The money I have saved in 7.5 weeks has been an added bonus.

Has your health improved since you quit and, if so, in what ways?

Improving all the time I have noticed I don't wheeze now and my energy levels are getting better.

Have you achieved anything since quitting that you couldn't do whilst smoking?

As part of my recovery with cardiac rehab team I now attend Keep Fit. 

What do you like about not smoking?

Not having smelly breath and clothes.

Do you know how much money you have saved by not smoking?

Since my heart attack I have saved nearly £500!

Do you have plans to treat yourself with the money saved?

It's all going towards my holiday with my husband. 

What would you say to anyone who has recently started smoking, or, if you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self before you smoked that first cigarette?


More information is known about smoking now but when I started it was thought to be a good thing to do.


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