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Smoking is the leading cause of avoidable deaths in Ireland, with 6,000 people dying each year from the effects of smoking, and recent research has provided an insight into the obstacles and thoughts among Irish adults when it comes to breaking the habit. Almost seven-in-10 Irish adults claim that they have been smoking for 10 years or more, with women more likely to have done so than men. In addition, over half of those surveyed (53 per cent) claimed to have first begun smoking under the legal age limit of 18 years old. 

According to the research, almost six-in-10 (56 per cent) of those who currently smoke and have previously tried to give up smoking claim that the cost of smoking was a motivator in their decision, with almost half (48 per cent) claiming that they did so to prevent future health problems. However, only 29 per cent of smokers said they had spoken with their pharmacist about quitting. 

Denis O’Driscoll, LloydsPharmacy Superintendent Pharmacist, said: “Over the past year, we have seen an increase in those partaking in our quit smoking services, with a particular increase in customers seeking NRT products such as lozenges, gum and sprays… We will work to find the best approach for each person and understand that giving up smoking is a process. Knowing where you are in that process can help you decide what to do next to stop smoking. Our LloydsPharmacy stores feature confidential care rooms where a trained pharmacist can speak with customers on the benefits of NRT and the options available to them. Now, as the Covid-19 pandemic continues, pharmacists can play a pivotal role in educating people on their health and offer sound advice and quick service.” 

The research was conducted by LloydsPharmacy.