Healthy Living

Having trouble quitting?

Help at hand this World No Tobacco Day

Written by Sophie Jackson
Caucasian female is breaking a cigarette.

In Australia, up to two-thirds of deaths in smokers can be attributed to their smoking1 and while the dangers are widely known, around 13% of Australians still smoke2.

But quitting is not without its challenges and it’s normal for smokers to try to quit several times before they quit for good.

“Every quit attempt helps you to learn how to quit for good, so if you have tried to quit before, you are one step closer to being a non-smoker,” says Colman O’Driscoll, Clinical Director for Mental Health with Medibank Health Solutions “but it’s important to have a plan.”

There are many different methods and strategies to help people quit smoking successfully, including going ‘cold turkey’, Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) and other medications, professional support, including calling the Quitline, and getting online peer support such as

“For the greatest chance of success, it’s helpful to be open to all the evidence-based quit smoking methods” says Mr O’Driscoll.

“By combining willpower with an evidence-based quit smoking method, you’ll have a much better chance of success compared to using willpower alone. Finding your reason to quit can also be a powerful motivator.”

World No Tobacco Day (WNTD) is a great time for smokers to find a reason to quit and kick the habit. It is celebrated on 31 May across the globe to remind smokers about the harms of smoking and encourage people to improve their health and save money by going smoke-free.

Smokers can start planning now for their quit attempt by calling Quitline on 13 78 48 and speaking to a professionally trained advisor for information and support.

Tobacco smoking and all-cause mortality in a large Australian cohort study: findings from a mature epidemic with current low smoking prevalence. Banks, E, et al. 13:38, s.l. : BMC Medicine, Vol. 2015

2 Greenhalgh, EM, Bayly, M, & Winstanley, MH. 1.3 Prevalence of smoking—adults. In Scollo, MM and Winstanley, MH [editors]. Tobacco in Australia: Facts and issues. Melbourne: Cancer

2 Cancer Council Victoria; 2015. Available from

Written by Sophie Jackson

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