The adverse health effects of smoking are widely reported. Smoking can damage your immune system and increase your risk of stroke, heart attack, blood vessel damage, type 2 diabetes, and cancer in most parts of your body, especially your lungs. moreover, The American Cancer Society says that tobacco is Smoking-related cancer deaths cost 2 million years of life and $21 billion in lost income annually.
Apart from the aforementioned loss of income, smoking can directly impact the workplace by reducing productivity and endangering the health of non-smokers. Fortunately, business her leaders can reduce the negative health effects of smoking through smoke-free initiatives. Here’s how to make changes that benefit employee health and productivity, and your business in the long run.
Why does your company need a smoking cessation program?
Although this link is not immediately apparent, studies have shown that smoking can have a negative impact on workplace productivity. 2022 survey About the “Cost of Smoking” found that morbidity-related productivity losses totaled $184.9 billion in the United States. Causes of these losses include absenteeism, presenteeism, household productivity, and work incapacity due to personal health problems caused by smoking.
Smoking can also harm the health of non-smokers. Yale research They found that third-hand smoke, which adheres to clothing or leaves a residue on surfaces, can contaminate the environment in which smokers enter. This exposes nonsmokers to second-hand smoke equivalent to second-hand smoke emitted from 1 to 10 cigarettes, exposing them to all the harmful chemical compounds and associated health risks. So, if there are smokers in the office, they may be endangering the health of their co-workers, even if they go out and smoke.
To mitigate these threats to workplace health and productivity, employers should provide employees with resources to promote smoking cessation. This process can be difficult and costly, so it is essential to provide proper guidance and support. Here’s what you can do for your business.
How can I create a good quit smoking program?
Partner with a quit smoking expert
One of the best ways to help your employees quit smoking is to include a smoking cessation program in their health plan. These programs include several seminars to help set expectations and emphasize the importance of quitting smoking. Here, we discuss the health effects of smoking and the process of quitting smoking.
Employees may then be instructed to use nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). NRT products are smokeless nicotine replacements and come in different dosages.
Quitting smoking is not an easy journey, so workplace smoking cessation programs can also provide employees with a variety of resources to support them. These may include ways to connect them to quitlines, support groups, or even individual counseling. Your program encourages clients to seek support from loved ones to manage stress and increase accountability. You can also hold seminars where you can share tips for how to quit.
Implementing a smoke-free policy
An effective smoke-free policy reduces the ease of smoking and discourages employees from continuing the habit. You can start by strictly restricting smoking areas. Decide which areas smokers can use, and make sure they are outdoors far enough away so that non-smokers are not affected.
If employees choose to embark on a smoke-free journey, they can be encouraged to use non-destructive NRT products such as nicotine pouches and inhalers at work. A nicotine pouch is a small, discreet pouch that sits between your gums and upper lip. It can also be used indoors. VELO nicotine pouch It shows that these NRTs sold by Prilla do not produce smoke or require users to exhale. Nicotine inhalers are also suitable for smoking cessation policies.Employees can use it to inhale just like an e-cigarette, but in reality it is a heat and vaporless device that administers medication to the system. Voke nicotine inhaler You can make it feel familiar by reproducing the movement from hand to mouth when smoking a cigarette.
Once you’ve developed your smoke-free policies, discuss who these policies will affect. Especially when it applies to customers and building staff. It can also show the consequences of non-compliance and the timetable for implementing these policies. Proper planning of these policies and effective communication of implementation schedules can encourage employees to quit smoking.
Reduce workplace stressors
Stress is one of the biggest triggers for smokers. Therefore, it is imperative to create a healthy work environment so that they do not smoke another cigarette.
Our article on 7 Ways Business Owners Can Manage Stress offers tips from experts on how to take care of your mental health. These include having a good work-life balance, exercising, eating well, and forming strong relationships. These are all things employers can push to help their workers. You can also encourage a good work-life balance by encouraging employees to take time off and allowing flexible work arrangements such as hybrid and flex-time arrangements. Promote wellness by offering gym memberships or serving healthy meals in your cafeteria. Finally, foster strong relationships in the workplace by communicating frequently and honestly, hosting team building activities and informal hangout events, and providing healthy opportunities for workplace collaboration.
Fostering a healthy work environment can reduce stressors in an employee’s life and reduce the need to smoke.
Smoking can have a negative impact on both your health and productivity. Understanding how to create a good workplace smoke-free program can make your workplace a healthier environment for your employees.