Smoking addiction clinics in high demand

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Updated 17 March 2016
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Smoking addiction clinics in high demand

RIYADH: There has been a high demand in the Kingdom from people seeking help to give up smoking in the wake of the rise in tobacco prices announced recently by the government.
This is according to Anas Al-Hadi, a doctor at a clinic treating people for nicotine addiction. “Once a person stops smoking he may feel somewhat different because nicotine is no long in his body,” he was quoted as saying by a local publication on Wednesday.
“Some of the side effects of quitting include nervousness, headaches, anger, craving to smoke, sleeplessness, eating more and weight gain,” he said. However, these are temporary and last for only four weeks at most. Will power is crucial to successfully quit, he said.
Ali Al-Wadeh, general supervisor of the anti-smoking campaign of the Health Ministry, and secretary-general of the National Committee to Fight Tobacco, said the Kingdom was one of the first nations to ratify the World Health Organization’s (WHO) campaign against tobacco use.
He said the Kingdom launched its anti-smoking campaign in 2002, which is aimed at limiting the health effects of nicotine addiction.
The campaign is being supervised by the National Committee to Fight Tobacco, which includes two representatives from all ministries. The campaign organizers have also set up clinics throughout the Kingdom, including a mobile unit, to help people quit.
He said the Kingdom has also launched campaigns to end the illegal trade in tobacco products, the first Arab country to do so. There are also regulations sanctioned by the royal court to combat tobacco use.
Al-Wadehi said the increase in tobacco prices is a strategy backed by the WHO. Studies show that if retail prices of cigarettes are hiked by 10 percent this reduces the number of smokers in high-income countries by 4 percent. If it is raised by 8 percent in middle and low-income countries, this results in less teenagers smoking.
Those who want to stop smoking should access the site www.tcpmoh.gov.sa to get a free consultation.


Saudi Arabian Ministry of Interior has received more than 120,000 applications for driving licenses so far

Updated 5 min 48 sec ago
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Saudi Arabian Ministry of Interior has received more than 120,000 applications for driving licenses so far

RIYADH: The Saudi Arabian Ministry of Interior has established six driving schools for women in different regions of Saudi Arabia, according to an interior ministry spokesperson.

Mansour Al-Turki said on Sunday that the ministry has received more than 120,000 applications for driving licenses so far and demand is still very high.

Saudi women celebrated taking the wheel for the first time in decades on Sunday as the Kingdom overturned the world’s only ban on female motorists, a historic reform expected to usher in a new era of social mobility.

At a press conference to mark the occasion, Al-Turki said there are 9 districts where female driving schools have not yet been established and there is evidence to suggest women in these areas want to learn.

The interior ministry spokesperson urged motorists not to violate regulations and infringe on the rights and freedoms of others.

Meanwhile, Director General of the Saudi Traffic Directorate, Maj. Gen. Mohammed Al-Bassami said the directorate has developed a device to identify and verify driving licenses through a fingerprinting system.

He acknowledged there is great awareness among women in dealing with traffic rules and regulations, adding there are no traffic exemptions for women, only for people with special needs.

The move is part of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s plan to modernize and reform Saudi Arabia.