On the 8th October 2013, the EU decided on new legislation on the sale of cigarettes.
The main points as follows:-
*Ban menthol flavour, Flavoured cigarettes will be banned from 2022
*Restrict electronic cigarettes
*New regulations will see warning labels covering 65 per cent of packets
*Packs of 10 cigarettes will be outlawed.
I will get to my opinions as a smoker on these points later in the article. Here is a bit about my smoking history.
I have been smoking for well over 15 years. I have tried many times over the years but have only managed 6 months. I can normally go without the fags for a few days, but then always start smoking again. I know this may sound stupid to non smokers but I do enjoy having a cigarette.
Over the years I have tried the patches, thou some these do burn and mark my skin very bad but this is because I suffer from very bad eczema although they do seem to take the edge away from any cravings. I don’t like the gum as no matter what flavour you have it taste horrible and the micro tabs that you put under your tongue also taste horrible and make me heave. I have been using the electronic fags over the years since they first came out. At first they were really heavy but are becoming lighter. My favourite is the E-lites electronic cigarettes along with the plastic initiator. I used the Plastic initiator mostly just to have something in my hand and sucking on it even thou the cartridge is empty, as it feels like I am smoking. I do find the cartridges too strong for the first ten to twenty puffs.
My father had smoked all my life and even my younger brother started smoking before me. During my late teens smoking never interested me. In my early 20’s it was socially accepted to smoke when out in pubs, cubs so I would have maybe 1 or 2 throughout the night but it wasn’t to do with peer pressure.
At the time my girlfriend also smoked so while on night outs I used to have just the odd one or two cigarettes as it felt the normal thing to do. Then after about 12 months with that girlfriend we separated and I started smoking a bit more not just socially, I was having about 5 cigarettes during the day and 10 cigarettes if on night outs. When I met the ex-wife she was a normal smoker and would have around 20 a day so I smoked more.
When I first started smoking I used to smoke the Brand Benson and hedges gold, then Sovereign but now I smoke cheaper brands like Number 3 or Sterling as can’t afford the price of either Benson and Hedges or Sovereign anymore. If I remember right when I started smoking over 20yrs ago a pack of 20 Benson and Hedges was under £3 but now even the cheaper brands are around £7 per pack, which is over double but you could say the about petrol and diesel prices, will leave that moan for another day 🙂
When the smoking ban in public places was about to come in, it definitely made me feel like I wanted to give up smoking, as I always loved a pint with a fag as they seemed to go hand in hand. If I remember rightly the first time I did just under 6 months with the help from the doctor who advised me to use patches and the plastic initiator.
When I was in a public place I was always sensible by not smoking around people who were eating or by children as felt it wasn’t nice to have smoke blown over or by us if eating. I wouldn’t like it if I was a non smoker. I would either wait till everyone had finished eating, go outside or away from the eating area.
At the moment I smoke about 15 cigarettes a day. I buy packs of 10 as if I was to buy packs of 20 I would smoke them all in a day, this does cost a little bit more. What I do is I buy a 10 pack in the morning and they last me either the day or till about 6pm. My local shop is just literally over the road I can easily get more if I want them. Sometimes I use my E-lite cigarette or the plastic initiator to save money or if my chest is hurting from coughing as I have Asthma.
By doing it this way it is costly me slightly more per cigarette, but at least I’m not smoking as much as I used to do.
The main reason I would want give up smoking is to save money as my Fiancée who is a non-smoker has worked it out that I spend around £2000 a year which could pay for 2 weeks all inclusive holiday aboard for all of us and realistically it is getting harder to keep paying the price as they increase by 25p with every budget.
I agree with the new legislations as something needs to be done about smoking. I live on a estate where you see all the time, kids as young as 10 smoking or hanging outside the shopping begging adults to get them some cigarette which I think is bad. I have a daughter who is 13years and my Fiancée has a daughter 12years and a son 8years and if any of our children were court smoking we would definitely go mad as it is very addictive and that is coming from a smoker who wish I had never started smoking all those years ago.
I feel the new rule of outlawing packs of 10 cigarettes is going to make it harder for me to cut down. In general the new rules are making the sensible smoker alienated from everyone else and making them feel like they are doing wrong.
I feel the ban of menthol fags from 2022 is waste as some people only some these as normal cigarettes to strong for them. Plus I feel it is stupid to ban one type of cigarette and not others.
I think putting larger warnings on the packets to deter people starting smoking will work but wont for the people who already smoke as they wouldn’t pay any attention to the picture or information.
It is the same with the advert on the television of people having problems breathing or in hospital bed dying as these triggered my brain into wanting a cigarette.
I am not too sure on the legislation on the electronic fags being restricted as I feel these are a good alternative to normal cigarettes as they aid people to either reduce the amount of cigarette they have or to stop smoking all together.
The only problem I have with the e-lites is that I suffer from a headache which is a common side effect with some of the bands.
I am finding that if you buy one brand of the rechargeable cigarettes when it runs you can’t find the refills in all the shops so either end up buying new brand cigarettes or have to carry all the different rechargeable parts to all brand with you.
As I’m writing this article it is making me think about giving up but always finds it hard. I did try at the beginning of the month for Stoptober but this only lasted a day so will keep you updated on my progress