The National Institute of Public Health supports the proposal for amendments to the law on restricting the use of tobacco and related products prepared by the Ministry of Health. At the same time, they propose shortening the transition period for the abolition of smoking rooms.
The proposed amendments also include a ban on all flavorings in electronic cigarettes, with the exception of some tobacco flavorings. NIJZ fully supports the measure, as it is key to protecting the health of residents by reducing the use of electronic cigarettes among young people and residents in general, and preventing the harmful consequences of inhaling aromas on the health of electronic cigarette users.
Many known adverse effects of short-term use
Flavors are one of the most common reasons for trying, starting to use and using electronic cigarettes, they warned. In addition, flavors in e-cigarette liquids are at high levels and represent a high proportion of all chemicals in these products. “The presence of flavorings in e-cigarette liquids is a cause for concern, as flavorings have not been adequately researched for adverse health effects,” warn the NIJZ.
While the long-term health effects of e-cigarettes have not yet been studied, as these products have been on the market for too short a time, many adverse effects of short-term use are known. In addition to mouth and throat irritation, cough, nausea and headache, these are serious health consequences, namely nicotine addiction, epileptic seizures, acute chemical lung damage and various forms of pneumonia, nicotine poisoning, to name a few.
They also support a ban on the addition of additives that create the impression that the product provides health benefits or that the additive reduces health risks. Electronic cigarettes without nicotine, which are marketed as inhalers and contain various vitamins, stimulants, synthetic and natural aromas, are being detected on the market. Although these electronic cigarettes do not contain nicotine and are not addictive, they can still be harmful to health.
There are around 120 smoking rooms in Slovenia
They also agree with the proposed abolition of smoking rooms, but suggest shortening the five-year transition period to one year. They estimate that the abolition of smoking rooms would achieve maximum protection of residents from exposure to tobacco smoke in closed public and work spaces. There are about 120 smoking rooms in Slovenia, and according to NIJZ, inspectors report frequent violations of legislative provisions.
At the same time, NIJZ also proposes a significant reduction in the number of tobacco and related products sales points, a ban on the sale of chewing and snuff tobacco, as well as a ban on smoking tobacco and the use of electronic and heated tobacco products in certain semi-open and open spaces.