Refer Yourself to Stop Smoking Services

Last updated by Peer reviewed by Dr Doug McKechnie
Last updated Meets Patient’s editorial guidelines

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Quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do for your health. You can self-refer to your local NHS stop smoking services for free. Written by a GP.

Quitting smoking is the single best thing you can do for your health - the benefits go far beyond your lungs and your wallet. But that doesn’t make it easy. Of the 6.1 million smokers in England, six in 10 want to quit. Many try to give up using willpower alone, 'going cold turkey', but this is actually the least effective method.

The best way to quit smoking for good is with expert help from your local stop smoking service, together with aids such as e-cigarettes (vapes) or nicotine replacement in patch, gum, mouth spray or inhalator form.

Stop smoking services are free, friendly and can hugely increase your chances of stubbing out the habit for good. They’re staffed by expert advisors who are there to help you find the right way to quit. You’ll likely be offered a one-to-one appointment with an adviser, but group and drop-in services may be available too. Many people find sharing their quitting experience with others is hugely helpful.

A stop smoking advisor can give you accurate information and advice, and well as professional support for the first few months of your quitting journey.

They'll also work with you to decide whether you would benefit from stop smoking treatments, and if so which would work best for you. They may be able to offer tablets such as varenicline or bupropion on the NHS, or affordable stop smoking treatments nicotine replacement therapy.

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England Personal Quit Plan and local stop smoking services

Isle of Man (provided free by the Department of Health and Social Care)


Northern Ireland



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Further reading and references