The Royal Society of Public Health has recommended new changes to smoking regulations in the UK.
The recommendations include; introducing a smoking exclusion zone around schools, pubs and bars where the public can no longer smoke, the mandatory sale of e-cigarettes wherever traditional tobacco cigarettes are sold and the inclusion of e-cigarettes in smoking cessation services and the British Dental Health Foundation (BDHF) has welcomed these calls for change.
‘There needs to be major changes made to protect the next generation from deadly diseases, such as mouth cancer, which are caused by cigarette smoking,’ chief executive of the BDHF, Dr Nigel Carter OBE said.
‘Smoking is heavily linked to many serious oral health problems including gum disease, which is the most common cause of tooth loss in UK adults; it is also responsible for the majority or mouth cancers and is the direct cause of thousands of deaths every year.
‘Every year almost 7,000 people in the UK are diagnosed with mouth cancer, and it leads to more deaths than testicular and cervical cancer combined.
‘The recommendations made by the RSPH in its report, “Stopping smoking by using other sources of nicotine“, outlines some very sensible and effective ways in which we can change attitudes and behaviours when it comes to smoking, saving countless lives.
‘Unlike the original smoking ban, which focussed on the dangers of second hand smoking, these measures are designed to stop the behaviour of people smoking in highly visible areas from influencing the behaviour of children and other individuals.’
The report from the Royal Society of Public Health shows that nine in 10 people believe nicotine is harmful to health.
Whereas the BDHF claims it is the many other chemicals found in cigarettes that are causing many of the deadly diseases.
‘If we can get smokers to use safer forms of nicotine, like e-cigarettes, in prominent public locations we will hopefully change the perception of nicotine as a seriously harmful product itself.
‘In fact, outside of cigarettes and in low doses nicotine is no more harmful to health than caffeine.
‘If the Government adopts the recommendations in this report then there is an opportunity to have the same effect as the 2007 smoking ban, which has saved thousands of lives by encouraging people to quit smoking.
‘Over 400 000 people gave up in the years succeeding the ban, whilst 7 million still smoke 65% of these express a wish to quit.
‘The cost to the NHS of treating smoking related illness is estimated at some £13 billion a year and half of those who smoke will die of smoking related disease.’