The days when almost everybody smoked are now firmly in the past. People are very conscious of the health risks of smoking, and the high cost of tobacco products is also a deterrent.
Nicotine patches have been used for quite a while because they’re a compromise: the patches deliver a small dose of nicotine, but not as much as cigarettes.
In addition to containing lower nicotine levels, patches are also free from tar and other contaminants found in cigarettes. These contaminants, not the actual nicotine, are normally responsible for the health risks of smoking.
Tobacco Harm Reduction
Harm reduction policies in public health aim to reduce all kinds of health risks. For example, anybody who drives a motor vehicle is taking the risk that the vehicle could get out of control or another vehicle could crash into it.
However, traffic regulations minimize the chances of accidents, and seat belt laws reduce the chances that people will be severely injured or killed if there’s an accident. These are both examples of successful harm reduction policies.
Cigarettes and some other tobacco products are classified as high-risk tobacco products. Smoking cigarettes is the most dangerous way of getting a nicotine fix because when you light a cigarette, the burning tobacco releases dangerous toxins, especially tar.
On the other hand, nicotine itself isn’t harmful (although it’s highly addictive). Therefore, smokers worldwide would benefit if there was a way of getting a nicotine fix that didn’t produce dangerous toxins.
That’s exactly why nicotine pouches were developed. They provide a means of getting nicotine without the harmful substances. Zyn pouches are some of the best pouches around. With such a choice of flavors, sizes, and formats, every customer will surely find something right for them.
Snus is a type of snuff that has been common in Sweden since the early 1700s. Users place the snuff between their gum and upper lip and leave it there for quite a while. Although many people have used snus for many years, it’s now illegal in almost all EU countries (not counting Sweden).
Different snack brands have different ingredients, so the different types also have different health risks. However, because of the smaller amount of nicotine that snus contains, it’s much less unhealthy to use snus than to smoke tobacco.
A serious drawback of snus is that after chewing on it for some time, the user has to spit it out. That might not sound like too much of a problem, but there’s no denying that there are several situations in which it might be awkward to spit it out.
Nicotine pouches are similar to snus in at least two important ways. Both of these nicotine products contain nicotine and are considered safer to consume than cigarettes or cigars.
The first nicotine pouches were produced early in the 21st century. The pouches, about the size of a thumbnail, are made of vegetable fibers saturated with flavorings and variable amounts of nicotine. The pouch is placed inside the upper lip, where the mucous membranes absorb the nicotine.
Plant fibers make up the majority of the pouch. These fibers give the pouch the right size and shape to fit comfortably under the lip. Pouches also contain flavorings and sweeteners. The nicotine content of each pouch is typically between 1 and 10mg, but much higher doses are available if desired.
When the pouch is empty, it has to be discarded, much like chewing tobacco. But whereas chewing tobacco has to be spat out, nicotine pouches often come in a storage case, so the used pouch can be replaced when empty and discarded later.
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Another reason nicotine pouches are becoming more popular, compared with cigarettes, is that they are available in different flavors. Smokers must put up with the taste of tobacco, whether they like it or not, if they want to get their nicotine fix. Pouch users, on the other hand, can choose from a range of flavors.
Popular flavors include Apple Mint, Citrus, Black Cherry, Spearmint, and Cool Mint. For those who prefer a more neutral taste, the Original or Gold options are available, as are Bellini, Espresso, and many others.
Unlike nicotine gum or lozenges, nicotine pouches are not approved by the FDA as a safer alternative to smoking. However, in this case, FDA approval might be something smokers should be prepared to do without.
Around the world, there are approximately 1.1 billion smokers, and this number has been more or less stable since 2000. Because the overall population has grown by nearly two billion since then, the proportion of smokers is now slightly down compared to non-smokers.
However, according to the GSTHR (Global State of Tobacco Harm Reduction), this isn’t enough. We are heading towards a massive health crisis if the number of smokers is not drastically reduced.
According to GSTHR, as much as 80% of smokers live in low-to-middle-income countries. That means that the burden of smoking-related conditions can be expected to overwhelm the health systems in those countries sooner or later – if it hasn’t already done so.
The World Health Organization, in 2006, predicted that by 2030, smoking-related illnesses would be responsible for 8 million deaths annually, but the 8 million death mark had already been reached by 2022.
It has never been more essential to reduce the harm done to our health by smoking. Luckily, it has also never been easier to consume nicotine conveniently and relatively safely with nicotine pouches.