News Tuesday November 1, 2011

Picture warnings on cigarette packets in the UK

The serious effects of smoking on health are known to all. According to the WHO, smoking is the leading cause of preventable deaths and diseases among people worldwide. Despite this however, many people around the world continue with this habit, often neglecting the health warnings.

In the UK, there are about ten million people who are active smokers. To create more awareness about the serious effects of smoking among these smokers, the government has come up with a picture warning signs on cigarette packets.

According to the Department of Health (DOH), picture warnings can create some effect in the minds of smokers and they may think to kick off this habit. “The warnings illustrate the devastating effects that tobacco can have on health,’’ says a source from DOH.

This plan comes into effect in the UK from 1 October, 2008. These warnings can have some effect on smokers, as per the DOH, according to which, many smokers had actually sought for the NHS Smoking helpline, after written warnings were introduced in the year 2003.

The picture warnings may include signs of throat cancer, rotting teeth, and even the erectile dysfunction (impotence), which is the most common sexual problem in men. These pictures will be displayed on packs of cigarettes, so every time a smoker buys a cigarette pack, he or she is going to see these pictures.

Effects of smoking in the UK

If you take a look at the statistics, there are about 2 million fewer smokers in the UK as compared to the year 1982. This is certainly a healthy sign, but not good enough for a complete smoking cessation in the UK. About 87,000 people die every year in the England due to smoking-related diseases.

The new picture warnings is a good initiative of authorities concerned in the UK, who believe that pictures can have a more dramatic effect on people than with simple written warnings. Some of the nations have even issued graphic warnings on cigarette packs in the past after Canada introduced it in the year 2001.

The countries that issue graphic warnings on tobacco products include Singapore, Australia, Brazil, New Zealand, India, Venezuela, Uruguay, and Thailand. These warnings can work to a great extent in helping people to stop smoking. In the UK, as per sources of the NHS, about 350,000 smokers have actually stopped smoking.

How to stop smoking?

The NHS helpline is active in the UK, to help smokers who find difficulty in quitting smoking. The NHS in England provides free and expert advice support for stop smoking. You can contact them, if you are a smoker and wish to quit smoking.

Some prescribed drugs such as Champix are also useful to help smokers quit smoking easily. It helps reduce the withdrawal symptoms as well as strong cravings for nicotine, which is the main ingredient in a cigarette.


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