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Read about Adam’s story  

Adam, who began smoking at 13 due to the influence of peers, had smoked up to 15 cigarettes a day before signing up to access free stop smoking support through a staff scheme offered by Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Although Adam, who is an Operations Manager for the NHS, had successfully quit smoking once before, like many smokers, he relapsed when a stressful situation in his life came to a head. However, earlier this year, when he realised the effect his smoking was having on his young son, he found the interventions that have helped him stay smoke free for four months and counting.

Adam, 32, explained: “I quit once before, for six months, but then an extremely stressful situation happened, and like a lot of people, I turned to cigarettes as a coping mechanism. It was a release in a way, and when I was in pain it seemed to make it go away.”

Then, a few months ago Adam was returning from his break at work after having a cigarette, and saw an information stall in the foyer offering free support through the Smoke Free app.

Adam said: “It just so happened that my son, who’s five, had made a comment only about a week or so before that really made me think, so I approached the stall, which I might not have done otherwise.

“We’d been out one day, and he asked me if I was going off for a cigarette now so that he wouldn’t be waiting around for me. I didn’t want him thinking I was making him wait for me to have cigarettes all the time, and that stayed with me.”

Initially, Adam used mid-strength (14mg) nicotine patches, along with a vape, before coming off the patches after about a month. He found the Smoke Free app and their advisors really helpful, and still uses a vape.

He said: “I used the Smoke Free App mainly for practical information which it was really good for, on things like the right dosage of nicotine patches.

“The vape has been the really big thing that has helped me quit, as for me smoking was all about daily habits. I probably smoked a lot less when I was younger, but then once I started driving, I’d have two or three cigarettes on the way to work, and the same again on the way back.

“The vape is helping me break those habits, but I couldn’t have done it without lots of support, both at work, from the app and from friends and family.”

He continued: “I use a smooth vaping liquid now, which I prefer as it’s more realistic compared to cigarettes.

“It’s saving me a lot of money and I feel better since stopping smoking. I used to struggle going up stairs. I have a lot more breath now and can keep up better with my son. I used to feel a lot more tired.”

It also helped Adam that his partner stopped smoking around the same time, and none of his immediate family smokes, but he’s found encouragement from further afield as well, and has found that people around him have asked about quitting.

Adam said: “Everyone’s been really considerate. For example, when I go round to see my partner’s family, they smoke but they go outside when I’m there, which has really helped, and now my partner’s sister is using a vape instead too. We’ve all been able to support each other.

“To anyone wanting to stop smoking I’d say go for it. There’s no harm in trying and the vape has been really helpful. I think my work colleagues and family would have hated me if I’d gone cold turkey so the vape has been amazing. I’m confident I won’t smoke again.”