Sign up to the Quit plan
Joe Dilworth decided to quit smoking after two life-changing events.
Joe had been smoking 35 cigarettes a day over the last ten years when he decided the time had come to quit.
Around the time his baby son was born, Joe was also diagnosed with diabetes, these two life-changing events gave him the push to quit cigarettes once and for all.
"I have a little baby boy who is sixteen months. He is one of the leading reasons why I gave up...I was also diagnosed with diabetes twelve months ago and it was the nurse who I dealt with through my diabetes, who would have recommended the smoking cessation service – that’s where I meet Miriam."
Joe had tried quitting before, the last time he managed to quit for four years. However, he explains how he started smoking again on a night out with friends.
"In a bit of madness one night, I just picked up my buddy’s cigarettes and I went back smoking and it took me a further ten years to go back off them."
This time it’s different and Joe is determined to stay quit. When he was put in touch with his local smoking cessation officer, Miriam O’Shea, they discussed what support method would suit Joe’s busy lifestyle and decided that the one to one smoking cessation support would be the best way forward.
"I found it very helpful. I just wouldn’t have had the time for the group sessions, so I went on the one to one sessions with Miriam."
Joe also used Nicorette patches and inhaler to help deal with his cravings.
"I found it very successful... There were times I would have felt cravings, I would have gone to the patch. I would have rubbed it. That was my answer to apply a bit more nicotine. I had the inhaler as well. And I suppose I did a bit of mental therapy on thinking of the benefits of not smoking."
Joe found the one to one support worked for him and would recommend it to anyone thinking about quitting.
"I’d highly recommend it if you plan to start quitting. I think it has been successful for me on this occasion – it just ticked all the boxes. I had the desire, I suppose this is the big thing. I found it very supportive."
Joe smiles as he talks about his family and what it means to be smokefree around them.
"I have a young family, I’ve a little 5 year old who kept annoying me about stopping smoking [she would say] “there is a smell from you Daddy, your clothes are dirty Daddy” and all this and I’ve a little baby boy... I can go home now and pick him up and not worry about going for mouthwash or brushing my teeth or anything. I can pick him up straight away and give him a hug. So it does make a difference."
When asked what the best thing about being smoke-free is, Joe talks about his family and his two young children.
"The best thing is being able to kiss and hug my little kids. I suppose number two would be the financial cost of it because financing 30 and 35 cigarettes a day pays for a good holiday every year."
When Joe talks about the future, he reflects about how the years of smoking have impacted on his health and what it means for his future.
"Somebody told me around 5 minutes per cigarette taken off your life. So there is a lot of minutes gone off my life and if I was there again I’d like to have all those minutes back to be with my family and friends.."