Why Is The FDA Reducing Nicotine In Cigarettes?

 
Nicotine is an addicting substance. Cigarettes are incredibly harmful. There is an overwhelming amount of research pointing to the fact that cigarettes are deadly, cause cancer, and are bad for the environment. Yet cigarette sales are consistently high and the tobacco industry is booming.
Addicts and alcoholics in recovery are a large smoking population. Considered to be a far less harmful substance than drugs and alcohol, smoking is not argued against when addicts and alcoholics are in treatment. Most treatment programs offer smoking cessation to encourage clients to quit, but few treatment programs require clients to quit smoking cigarettes entirely. Recovery from alcohol and drug addiction often conjures images of people standing around and smoking cigarettes in between recovery support meetings and sessions during their stay in treatment. Often this is true.
Nicotine is addicting and considered to be an addictive substance. People who smoke cigarettes feel more calm and collected when they’re smoking and start to get anxious when they do not smoke. Addiction is defined by experiencing a tolerance develop. People who become addicted to cigarettes can smoke one to two packs a day and need that many cigarettes to keep their nerves from acting up. Cigarettes are a powerful addiction because like drugs and alcohol they cause symptoms of withdrawal. When “detoxing” from nicotine, people often experience high anxiety, cravings, restlessness, irritability, and difficulty sleeping, as well as changes in appetite.
The Food and Drug Administration recently announced that they will be working to lower the amount of nicotine in cigarettes in order to make cigarettes less addictive, according to NPR. Ripple effects have started to spread throughout the country, including the stocks and shares of tobacco companies. For some time the FDA has made mention of regulating nicotine and caffeine as addictive substances. This marks the agency’s first attempt to regulate one of the two. However, changes will not be immediate. Applications by tobacco companies are not due until 2021. In the United States, tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable disease and death. More than 480,000 deaths every year are caused by nicotine addiction and tobacco use.
As for addicts and alcoholics in recovery, the new federal movement toward reducing nicotine in cigarettes could be helpful. Recovery is the opportunity to live in complete freedom from any dependency on any external substance, like cigarettes. Without the strong amount of nicotine or cigarettes in general, those in recovery will be challenged to work harder in emotional and stress management.
 

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