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World No Tobacco Day – May 31. When you’re ready, we’re here


Victoria’s smokers are being encouraged to have a go at quitting on May 31, when World No Tobacco Day puts the spotlight on smoking.

To help smokers who want to ditch the cigarettes for the day – or hopefully for good – Quit has developed a free World No Tobacco Day Quit pack which includes a range of resources and materials to help smokers quit for good.

Every year on May 31 World No Tobacco Day is highlighted around the globe to raise awareness of the devastating toll of smoking.

Quit Executive Director Todd Harper says smoking kills over 4500 people a year in Victoria – that’s 13 Victorians every day – and World No Tobacco Day is a great day to aim to quit.

'A lot of smokers think they should be able to quit on their own, and try, but we know that a lot of quit attempts aren’t successful.'

'For World No Tobacco Day this year we will be focussing on the range of ways Quit can help smokers who want to kick the habit for good.'

'We want to remind smokers that there is help available to quit – and it can cost nothing more than a phone call. Different methods will work for different people, and that’s why Quit offers a variety of services.'

Mr Harper as well as providing free resources to help smokers quit, Quitline’s specially trained advisors can also give callers personalised advice.

'A Quitline advisor can help smokers work out their reasons for quitting, plan their quit attempt and give them strategies to get through the cravings,' Mr Harper says.

'Research shows that no matter what method a smokers uses to quit, they will significantly increase their chances of success if they access a support service like the Quitline,' Mr Harper says.

In Victoria, research shows that about 8 out of 10 smokers have made at least one quit attempt. However, it takes several attempts before most smokers finally quit for good.

Mr Harper says that that are a host of ways that smokers can access Quit’s expertise and support.

'Of course calling the Quitline on 131 848 is a great starting point for anyone who wants to quit, or is even just thinking about quitting.'

'The Quit website is becoming increasingly popular for people wanting help to quit. Simply by logging on to our website at www.quit.org.au, you can request a free Quit pack online and even send request to have a Quitline advisor call at a time that’s best for you.'

Will Power, a special animated character to help smokers through the quitting process can also be downloaded from Quit’s website.

'Quit also has audio and video tapes to help smokers quit, and these are available through the Quitline.'

For anyone who would like to make World No Tobacco Day on May 31 their day to quit, the best place to start is by calling the Quitline on 131 848 and asking for a free World No Tobacco Day Quit Pack.

Some facts about smoking

  • Worldwide, diseases caused by smoking kill around four million people each year. Somewhere in the world, every 8 seconds someone dies of a tobacco-related disease.
  • Tobacco is fast becoming a greater cause of death and disability than any single disease. If current trends continue, the World Health Organisation estimates that the toll will rise to ten million by 2030, one death every three seconds.
  • About 50 Australians die each day from tobacco related illness – that’s about 2 people per hour.
  • One in two lifetime smokers will die prematurely from their habit.
  • 8 out of ten new smokers are children or adolescents.
  • About 70,000 young people start smoking each year in Australia – that’s about 191 every day.
  • In 1999, nearly 269,000 students aged 12 to 17 were current smokers. If they all continue to smoke, 134,000 would die prematurely.
  • Cigarettes contain over 4000 chemicals, including poisons such as acetone (paint stripper), carbon monoxide, arsenic, ammonia and urethane, just to name a few.
  • -ends-

    Further information:
    Zoe Furman
    Media Communications Manager

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