Ban smoking outright, says study
Article date: 19 December 2013
There are many people who battle with their smoking addiction, who might wish to quit but who really struggle to stub out their habit for good.
Now, a report from the University of California (UC), San Diego School of Medicine suggests that one way to help people ditch the fags would be to implement blanket bans on smoking - not only for homes, but on a scale of city-wide prohibition.
Published in an online issue of Preventive Medicine, the report claims that doing so could encourage people to seriously cut back the amount of cigarettes they smoked or even quit altogether, were they less able to indulge in their habit.
Dr Wael Al-Delaimy, professor and chief of the Division of Global Health in the UC San Diego Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, explained: "When there's a total smoking ban in the home, we found that smokers are more likely to reduce tobacco consumption and attempt to quit than when they're allowed to smoke in some parts of the house."
"The same held true when smokers report a total smoking ban in their city or town."
Accordingly, the expert believes it is a matter for public health policy to acknowledge how effective implementing widespread bans could be.
Not only would such a system help those who smoke by encouraging them to quit, but it would also prove beneficial for members of the public who are subjected to second-hand smoke on a regular basis in public places where cigarettes are currently permitted.
Even passive smoking can have an extremely harmful effect on the body, with the smoke itself containing more than 4,000 chemicals.
It is a particular danger to children, as it increases their risk of cot death (or sudden infant death syndrome), asthma and other serious respiratory conditions such as bronchitis, meningitis, coughs and colds, among other health problems.
What's more, children who have either a parent or family member who smokes are as much as three times more likely to pick up the habit themselves, meaning stopping one generation via widespread bans could in fact prove beneficial to many people in the future.