Pouches Are An Emerging Trend For Smokers Trying To Quit
The search is always on for new ways to quit smoking –– with vapes and e-cigarettes having been the trendy new options during the last decade. That was at least until an “outbreak of vaping-related lung illnesses and deaths” began to cause concern. This led to consideration at the federal level of vaping bans pending further FDA regulation, with Time Magazine reporting that several states were looking into bans of their own as well. As of now, vaping is not entirely prohibited, but it is increasingly restricted with potential for broader bans. And this has led some who wish to use products to help them quit smoking to turn instead to nicotine replacement therapy.
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) has been around for quite some time, and is not considered harmful by most experts. Just in 2019 in fact, one Dr. Nancy Rigotti who directs the Tobacco Research and Treatment Center at Massachusetts General Hospital was quoted saying of NRT products, “They’re good. They work. They’re safe. It isn’t the nicotine that kills you, it’s the delivery system.” She goes on to point out that nicotine by itself does not seem to be linked to increased cardiovascular disease, cancer, and chronic lung disease. Those conditions result instead from tobacco, smoke inhalation, and various chemicals present in cigarettes (and e-cigs).
For anyone who is not familiar with the basic concept of NRT, Patient.info defines it as “a way of getting nicotine into the bloodstream without smoking.” The products accomplishing this goal have typically been gum, lozenges, patches, and occasionally oral sprays, and as the same Patient.info overview notes, they can increase a person’s chance of quitting “by about two thirds.” The last few years, however, have brought about another NRT product that is now gaining significant attention.
Nicotine pouches hit the U.S. market in 2016, and have lately become trendy. As a leading resource in the sector, Prilla defines these newer NRT products as “tobacco-free pouches that come in many different types, flavors, and nicotine strengths.” If a user is experiencing a nicotine craving, or simply regulating intake, they can simply take a pouch, lodge it up under their upper lip, and enjoy a slow, steady release of nicotine, free of tobacco or other harmful chemicals.
The flavor and strength aspects mentioned in that definition appear to be behind some of the growing popularity of nicotine pouches. While products like lozenges and gum have come with flavors before, the pouch market is rapidly developing options that go beyond the standard peppermint and citrus choices (though these are present as well). Already, flavors like honey lemon, dragon fruit, and cinnamon are on the market, and more are on the way. The fact that users can also choose what strength to buy pouches in essentially allows for a customized NRT experience; consumers pick what they taste and how much nicotine they use. And on top of this overarching benefit, pouches are also extremely convenient to use –– available in small, portable packets or tins, and disposable at any ordinary trash receptacle.
On the back of these perks, the notion that these newer NRT products are becoming trendy isn’t merely an assumption. According to data from JAMA, sales of nicotine pouches from January through mid-June in 2020 totalled nearly $217 million, accounting for almost 46 million units. During the same period in 2016, the market sold only some 163,178 units for a total of $709,635. That change represents remarkable growth over just a few years’ time, and essentially proves that the pouch option has caught on in a big way among those seeking NRT solutions.
The bottom line is that for people trying to quit smoking, NRTs have long been effective products that increase the likelihood of success. And now, we may be seeing the emergence of the most popular product in this category we’ve yet seen. We hope this information has been helpful if you or someone you know is trying to quit, and for more content on health and a range of other topics, please come see us here at Rasaneha again!
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