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Nicotine without smoke: Tobacco harm reduction

Creator:

Tobacco Advisory Group, Royal College of Physicians

Subject Keywords: Smoke, Smoking, Nicotine, Smoking cessation, Addiction, Tobacco
Topic: Chronic Conditions
Conditions
Cancer
Chronic Conditions
Type: Report
Region: United Kingdom
Description:

This report aims to provide a fresh update on the use of harm reduction in tobacco smoking, in relation to all non-tobacco nicotine products but particularly e-cigarettes. It concludes that, for all the potential risks involved, harm reduction has huge potential to prevent death and disability from tobacco use, and to hasten our progress to a tobacco-free society. 

Key recommendations

  • Smoking is the biggest avoidable cause of death and disability, and social inequality in health, in the UK.
  • Most of the harm to society and to individuals caused by smoking in the near-term future will occur in people who are smoking today.
  • Vigorous pursuit of conventional tobacco control policies encourages more smokers to quit smoking.
  • Quitting smoking is very difficult and most adults who smoke today will continue to smoke for many years.
  • People smoke because they are addicted to nicotine, but are harmed by other constituents of tobacco smoke.
  • Provision of the nicotine that smokers are addicted to without the harmful components of tobacco smoke can prevent most of the harm from smoking.
  • Until recently, nicotine products have been marketed as medicines to help people to quit.
  • NRT is most effective in helping people to stop smoking when used together with health professional input and support, but much less so when used on its own.

Date:

28/04/2016

Rights: © Royal college of Physicians
Suggested citation:

Tobacco Advisory Group, Royal College of Physicians. (2016) Nicotine without smoke: Tobacco harm reduction [Online]. Available from: http://publichealthwell.ie/node/990285 [Accessed: 21st August 2019].

  

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