Stop smoking drop-in sessions for young smokers A new stop smoking drop-in for young people up to the age of 18 is now available in Bradford. The sessions will take place every Monday from 2pm until 4pm and will offer free confidential help and advice to young smokers who want to quit. The drop-in sessions have been set up by the stop smoking service, part of Bradford and Airedale Teaching Primary Care Trust (tPCT). The sessions will provide a wide range of support, information and tips to help people to stop smoking. They will be held at the Information Shop, on Broadway in Bradford city centre. Young people usually show signs of addiction within four weeks of starting to smoke. Over 80% of smokers start as teenagers with around 450 children starting to smoke each day. Smoking is dangerous at any age and has serious health impacts on young people, such as experiencing more respiratory symptoms than those who do not smoke, being two to six times more susceptible to coughs and increased phlegm and wheezing. The earlier children become regular smokers and kept the habit as adults, the greater the risk of them developing lung cancer or heart disease. Around half of the teenagers who carry on smoking will eventually be killed by tobacco. Young people over the age of 12 are able to use nicotine replacement therapy to help to quit. A combination of support and nicotine replacement therapy will give the best chance of success. Neela Chavan, young people stop smoking specialist at the tPCT said: “Too many young people smoke and it is our job to help them to quit. One in seven 15 year olds currently smoke and 66% of regular smokers start before the age of 18. “We need to help to reduce the high numbers of young people who take up smoking every year and quickly become addicted. These drop-in sessions are a great way of helping people across the district to give up smoking.” A similar drop-in service is due to start in Keighley in February. More details will be published soon. For further information about the drop-in sessions, contact the stop smoking service on 01274 363559.