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Ban "helping smokers to cut down"

New research shows that more than half of smokers have reduced their cigarette intake since the smoking ban was introduced.

The legislation, which came into effect in England on July 1, prohibits people from smoking in enclosed public areas such as pubs, clubs and offices.

Among those questioned for the Ciao survey, 1.8% said they have quit smoking since the ban, 15.8% said they smoke less overall, while 34.1% of those polled said they now have fewer cigarettes when they go to pubs.

The ban has also led to smokers staying away from bars, with 44.8% saying they have gone out less since it came into force.

Dr Noemi Eiser, honorary medical director of the British Lung Foundation, welcomed the figures on smoking cessation.

She said the organisation is "delighted to see that the ban is helping people smoke less", which will have a "positive impact on lung health".

Dr Eiser added: "The smoking ban has also given millions of people with lung conditions like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease a new lease of life.

"Before the ban, they were effectively excluded from many public places because of the effects of second-hand smoke, but thanks to the ban they can now socialise without fear of an attack of breathlessness."

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British Lung Foundation