Smoking is a topical issue that seems to be talked about everywhere and anywhere, with the media leading the way, in the battle to get people to put down the cigarettes for good. 10 million UK adults smoke – a number that is worryingly high.
Worryingly, 200,000 children, aged between 11 and 15, start smoking every year and the addiction takes hold quickly.
With this in mind, the Government has been taking action to reduce the number of existing smokers and try to prevent others starting the habit. Companies too have been aware of the battle and are now offering a range of items to help.
Eshishin.co.uk for example are just one manufacturer of aids that limit the need and desire to smoke, offering an entirely electronic version of a cigarette that is simply harmless.
In 2005, the Government made its first move to tackle the smoking habit by banning all tobacco advertising. It was hoped that if people weren’t regularly reminded of cigarettes, they would be less likely to start or more likely to beat their addiction.
This was quickly followed by the smoking ban in 2007, which made it illegal for people to smoke indoors. The ban did have a real impact but not enough to wipe out smoking for good, so in 2009 they started a new campaign to change cigarette packets.
Each packet was adorned with at least one ghastly image of a smoking related ailment. From blackened teeth to failed lungs to tumours, the more horrific the better. This served to deter people from smoking, making them think about the severe repercussions. The impact was minimal and the number of smokers maintained.
Now the Government is consulting with health officials and looking to other countries in a bid to find a solution. Australia seems to be the leader of the anti smoking campaign and its efforts have been closely monitored by the UK Government, before it takes action. That day could be fast approaching.
The Australians eradicated any form of tobacco advertising and that now includes the branding on cigarette packets. Instead, the usual logo and trade name of the cigarette manufacturer has been replaced with multiple ghastly images of the side effects of smoking.
Although the actual results of this are yet to be determined, an early poll suggests that 71% of Australians found cigarettes less satisfying after looking at the packets. An astonishing 81% have strongly considered quitting altogether. If this initiative is a success it will be introduced into Britain, almost immediately, and it could be the campaign that puts an end to lighting up for good.
By Debbie Fletcher @Debbie_Fletch18