Launched in 2012, Stoptober is a 28-day stop smoking challenge supported by Public Health England that encourages smokers across England to quit the habit for good. So why would 543 Dental want you to stop smoking? Read on…

Here are 28 smoking facts you need to know – one for each day of Stoptober!

  1. Each year thousands quit smoking for 28 days with Stoptober. Starting on 1st October, why not join in and help make this year the biggest year yet!
  2. Studies show that if you can go smoke-free for 28 days you are FIVE times more likely to quit for good!
  3. There are lots of ways to get support, download the Stoptober Smokefree app using iTunes or Google Play, or sign up to get text message support by texting TIPS to 63818.
  4. Even after one day without smoking, your body has started to repair itself – carbon monoxide is being removed from the body and your lungs are starting to work better.
  5. Did you know that a 20 a day smoker will spend nearly £3,000 a year on cigarettes! If you quit during Stoptober, think of what you could spend that money on instead!
  6. After 10 years of not smoking, your risk of lung cancer falls to half that of a smoker and your risk of heart attack falls to the same as someone who has never smoked.
  7. Smoking is one of the main causes of bad breath.
  8. Smoking stains your teeth! Nicotine staining can be only be removed by the hygienist at a hygiene appointment.
  9. Many of you will already know that smoking is a factor in gum disease, but did you know that it can also reduce your sense of taste?
  10. Smoking causes an increased risk of cancer in your lips, tongue, throat, voice box and oesophagus. A dentist will check all of these during your regular check-up.
  11. Cancer in part of the throat is called oropharyngeal cancer. More than 93% of oropharyngeal cancers are caused by smoking.
  12. More than 80% of second-hand smoke is invisible and odourless, so no matter how careful you think you’re being, your family still breathes in harmful poisons, putting them at risk of meningitis, cancer, bronchitis and pneumonia.
  13. Your body becomes dependent on nicotine if you smoke cigarettes regularly and over a long period of time. And you can feel withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, headaches, irritability and trouble sleeping. Stop smoking medicines can help you with these symptoms.
  14. If you’d like to give up smoking, speak to your dentist at your next dental check-up as they can give you smoking cessation advice and information. You can also visit your local NHS stop smoking service or pharmacy team.
  15. Even just one puff of a cigarette will set you back. Make a plan so that if you’re tempted you know what to do.
  16. The good news is that when you stop using tobacco, even after many years, you can greatly reduce your risk of developing head and neck cancer. Once you’ve been smoke-free for 20 years, your risk of head and neck cancer is reduced to that of a non-smoker.
  17. The gums are affected by smoking because of a lack of oxygen in the bloodstream, so the infected gums don’t heal. Gum disease can progress more quickly in smokers than in non-smokers.
  18. Did you know that after just 2 days of being smoke free, your sense of taste and smell will improve and those stale odours on your breath will disappear? Keep up the good work!
  19. Nearly three quarters of children worry that their mum or dad will die because they smoke. Not only that, but if you smoke, your children are three times more likely to smoke when they grow up. By quitting, your children will be less likely to take up smoking.
  20. The second you have a craving, distract your mind by doing something active – even if it’s the hoovering or washing up!
  21. If you’re feeling the symptoms of withdrawal, just remind yourself why you’re quitting in the first place. You can get through this!
  22. If you’ve accepted the Stoptober challenge you are doing amazingly well so far! Tell us how you’re getting on and what health benefits you’ve noticed, via our Twitter and Facebook pages!
  23. For every day you go without a cigarette, your risk of developing a number of diseases, including cancer, stroke and heart attack, decreases! Remember, every day is a victory. Keep telling yourself, “I won’t have a cigarette today.”
  24. The healing process after oral surgery, such as having a tooth removed, can be slowed down if the patient is a smoker. Smoking reduces the blood flow to the area therefore slowing the healing process. It can also cause infection, as the toxins from the cigarette have immediate access to an open wound.
  25. The risks of smoking, or breathing second-hand smoke, during pregnancy are serious, from premature delivery to increased risk of miscarriage, stillbirth or sudden infant death. Quitting smoking is one of the best things you and your partner can do to help your baby develop healthily during pregnancy and beyond.
  26. Congratulations you’ve made it through Stoptober! Your withdrawals are decreasing and your energy is increasing, well done! Why not treat yourself with the money you have saved after your first month being smoke-free?
  27. Although Stoptober lasts just 28 days, did you know that once you have been smoke-free between 3 – 9 months lung function is increased by up to 10%?
  28. Keep going into November and beyond! Help is here for you – call the NHS Smokefree helpline on 0300 123 1044 and talk to a trained, expert adviser. Lines are open Monday – Friday 9am to 8pm and Saturday to Sunday 11am to 5pm