National No Smoking Day in the United Kingdom

2 min read

The second Wednesday in March is a day for raising awareness about smoking and highlighting the resources available to those who want to quit.

London flags and underground

For smokers, national no smoking days can provide the impetus needed to make a change: to quit tobacco and nicotine use altogether, or if they don’t quit, to switch to a better alternative than continued smoking.

The best choice is to quit tobacco and nicotine altogether. However, in any given year, a large number of existing adult smokers will continue smoking cigarettes. They deserve better alternatives and this is where innovative smoke-free products can play a role.

E-cigarettes

E-cigarettes work by heating a flavored liquid to generate a vapor that’s mostly water. In many e-cigarettes, the liquid, and in turn the vapor, contains nicotine.

Since the first commercially successful e-cigarette was created in Beijing in 2003, e-cigarettes have grown in popularity across the globe. While they do not contain tobacco, most e-cigarettes contain nicotine, water, glycerol or propylene glycol and flavors.

In 2015, an expert review for the Government by Public Health England concluded – and has since confirmed its stance – that e-cigarettes present a fraction of the risk compared to smoking cigarettes, but that many smokers don’t realize this.

Around 1.5 million adults in the UK have switched to e-cigarettes and given up cigarette smoking.

Heat-not-burn tobacco products

The basic idea of heating rather than burning tobacco isn’t new. The challenge has been to invent – and scientifically verify – a heated tobacco product that smokers find satisfying enough to abandon cigarettes.

When a cigarette burns, it releases the tobacco flavors and nicotine. It also produces over 6,000 chemicals, of which around 100 have been identified as causes or potential causes of smoking-related diseases. Heated tobacco doesn’t burn. It is heated to much lower temperatures, without combustion, fire, ash, or smoke. Instead, it produces a nicotine-containing aerosol.

Because the tobacco is heated and not burned, the levels of harmful chemicals are significantly reduced compared to cigarette smoke. At least 6 million adult smokers around the world have abandoned cigarettes and switched to these products.

To be clear. These products are not risk free. They deliver nicotine and they’re addictive. They are for adults who smoke – not for former smokers or for people who have never smoked.