A woman with blonde hair sitting on a sofa

Cam’s Story

“I got in from work one day to find my oldest daughter upset in her room. She had found out at school about what causes cancer. I promised her I would stop smoking.”

Cam Walton’s biggest motivation for quitting smoking was her family. Her oldest daughter begged her to stop as she was so worried about her mum.

Cam, from Ryhope said: “I’d tried to quit a number of times over the years. But the thing that really got me was when I got in from work one day to find my oldest daughter upset in her room. She had found out at school about what causes cancer and was so worried about losing her mum. I promised her I would stop smoking.

“When I finished my last packet of cigarettes, that was it. I quit cold turkey – I was so determined. It also coincided with the menthol ban coming in. I was a menthol smoker and I just thought what’s the point? If I couldn’t buy them, it made perfect sense to quit.”

Cam and her family have recently moved to a new house and the money she saved is going towards new items for their home, as well as saving for a rainy day.

Woman in spotty dress sitting on a sofa

“She said: “I can’t believe how much I used to spend on cigarettes. I’ve saved loads since quitting! The way I think of it is – I’m not wasting money on something that could kill me. I can treat the girls and buy nice things for the house.

“I’m already noticing the benefits. I feel better in myself. I’m exercising more and my skin and hair are noticeably better. I used to get a bad chest which has improved too. Even my sciatica has improved, which is great because I spent years suffering debilitating pain with it. I worried it wouldn’t get better, but I haven’t had any flare-ups since I quit. Now I’m lifting weights and doing exercises I never thought possible.”

For Cam, the temptation is gone and there is all the motivation she needs to remain smoke-free.

She said: “I could’ve stopped any time, but there was always a reason not to before. If I ever felt stressed, I had a cigarette, but now I know that I can manage much better without them. I think lockdown helped me to quit as I wasn’t around other people smoking. It is well and truly out of my system now and I have got into a new routine. Not smoking is my new normal.

“’I’m feeling great. My family are over the moon. Once you start feeling better and seeing all the money you’re saving, it’s a no-brainer to keep going.”