People tend to be somewhat hard on smokers. We look at smokers as people who are doing something unhealthy for themselves and everyone surrounding them. What we don’t always think about (even if we understand it on a rational level) is that a lot of smokers are struggling to quit the habit, and are by no means intentionally disrupting others.
It’s also worth considering that smokers have to deal with multiple regulations that exclude them from different activities most people take for granted. Of course, most of these regulations are in place for the sake of public health, and absolutely should be. But we should still be considerate as to the negative effects on smokers –– often with regard to travel.
Pouches Offer a Helpful Option for Smokers Who Travel
Most major modes of transportation, for example, don’t allow any form of smoking. And if you look through our Travel Section from a smoker’s perspective, you’ll also begin to realize that most popular venues and activities are also largely anti-smoking.
Today, smokers can hardly go to a restaurant, shop, or even coffee shop without having to consider first if they would be able to manage without smoking while being there (or in the case of Starbucks even while sitting outside). There’s also a limited (and dwindling) number of businesses with designated smoking areas, which, where they do exist, allow people smoke after holding off cravings for a while.
The good news for travelers is that the recent emergence of nicotine pouches looks poised to become a lasting trend. For those who may not be familiar, a blog post on Prilla defines nicotine pouches as small packets users can place comfortably under their upper lip, to control their desire to smoke. They work by releasing nicotine in controlled amounts, and without the harmful substances and chemicals that come with cigarettes.
In the past, smokers sometimes had to think twice before, say, buying a plane ticket. This was out of fear of those uncomfortable moments mid-flight when a craving hits and smoking a cigarette simply isn’t an option. Even taking a train between cities has been a challenge for a while, with bans and restrictions having extended to this mode of transportation as well. Nicotine pouches, however, can solve these problems by providing simple alternatives that satisfy cravings without disrupting others or violating rules and laws.
Another benefit of nicotine pouches is that they don’t have the various drawbacks of some tobacco products. Chewing tobacco, for example, tends to force people to accumulate saliva and spit –– something that many find greatly unappealing. It also tends to leave traces of tobacco on the teeth, which can even lead to long-term stains.
Probably the best advantage of pouches with regard to travel though is that they allow smokers to go unnoticed. Pouches are hidden under the upper lips, easily disposed of, and are odorless even when in use. This little list of perks may not seem like much, but it can be very important for smokers used to getting angry looks from people on trains and in restaurants. Newsweek reported just a few years ago that some 56% of smokers report having suffered some form of discrimination.
Finally, nicotine pouches also allow smokers to travel without having to worry about the negative effects their habit can have on others. According to the CDC, secondhand smoke can provoke several health issues –– including increasing the risk of developing coronary heart disease and lung cancer. This can be particularly important for smokers who want to travel with their family and friends, without putting them at risk.
There’s still no perfect solution for the traveling smoker. But these pouches, which may seem like just another nicotine product to non-smokers, might just open the doors of long-distance travel for a group that has struggled with certain aspects of it for years.
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