Smokeless Tobacco

A recent survey of Massachusetts youth by the Mass. Dept. of Public Health & Elementary and Secondary Education found that a dangerous trend emerging in recent years is the increased use of smokeless tobacco and other tobacco products, including dissolvable tobacco. For the first time these “other tobacco products” are being used at a greater rate than cigarettes. Many kids and teens believe that these smokeless products are safer than cigarettes, but the fact is, they are not. Parents, teachers, and coaches should regularly talk to kids about the dangers of nicotine addiction and the potential risk of oral cancer. Smokeless tobacco is absorbed quickly and directly through the inside of the mouth, making it very dangerous and potentially deadly. Research has shown that more than half of smokeless users have non-cancerous or pre cancerous lesions in their mouth, with their chance of getting oral cancer being 400 percent greater than for nonusers.

A new smokeless tobacco product being introduced by tobacco companies could pose a potentially serious health threat to children and teenagers: dissolvable smokeless tobacco pellets. These pellets are made from finely ground tobacco with mint and cinnamon flavoring and contain 1 mg. of nicotine. They dissolve in the mouth and look like breath mints or bite-sized candy making them particularly dangerous for young children.

While these dissolvable tobacco products may be a substitute form of nicotine for adult smokers in settings where smoking is banned, the truth is, there really is still no such thing as harmless tobacco.

So where there’s no smoke there is still fire!

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