How to Find a Healthy Alternative to Smokeless Tobacco
Chewing tobacco is available in two forms – chewing tobacco and snuff. Both of them involve placing tobacco between the gum and cheek. They are commonly available in pouches and tins. Chew comes in the form of a roll, twist, plug, or leaf, while snuff is packaged in small pouches. The amount of tobacco placed in the mouth is called a dip, quid, Lipper, or pinch.
Many myths surround chewing tobacco, and some of them are that it’s less addictive or harmful than smoking. We bring you five essential facts that will (hopefully) change your perspective of this unhealthy habit and inspire you to seek for a healthy alternative to smokeless tobacco.
1. Nicotine addiction
Chewing tobacco used to be considered harmless and popularized by baseball players in the 1900s. Experts are doing their best to raise awareness about its harmful effects – it can cause young people to begin smoking and lead to nicotine addiction. Chewing tobacco contains up to five times more nicotine than cigarettes.
2. Oral and heart diseases
People who chew tobacco are more prone to different oral diseases. One of the most common conditions is leukoplakia – grey and white patches inside the mouth that can lead to tooth loss, tooth decay, gum diseases, and mouth cancer. Chewing tobacco can also trigger strokes and heart attacks because it can lead to high blood pressure and affect heart muscles adversely.
3. Increased risk of cancer
Besides nicotine, studies have shown that chewing tobacco contains about 30 cancer-causing chemicals (or carcinogens). Nitrosamines are the most harmful, and their amount varies from product to product. Other compounds found in chewing tobacco are arsenic, benzopyrene, cadmium, nickel, acetaldehyde, and formaldehyde. Users of chewing tobacco and snuff are at a higher risk for specific types of cancer, including cancers of the gums, cheek, tongue, lips, and floor and roof of the mouth. Other studies have suggested a correlation between using chewing tobacco and stomach cancer, esophageal cancer, and pancreatic cancer. That’s reason enough to switch to tobacco-free pouches.
4. Reproductive health problems
Pregnant women who use chewing tobacco can experience stillbirth or early delivery. Nicotine in chewing tobacco can negatively affect the development of the baby’s brain. Pregnant women shouldn’t use any tobacco products. As for tobacco-chewing men, studies show a negative impact of tobacco on semen. Even mild chewers are affected, while those with a more intensive chewing habit can experience defects in cytoplasmic and head residue.
5. Quitting chewing tobacco
If you have a chewing tobacco addiction and are considering quitting, there are a few things you should do to break the habit successfully. First, ask your family and friends to support you. You can use a nicotine patch or gum, which may help with your nicotine addiction but may not be as effective with your chewing habit. Do your research to find the best tobacco-free dip, like TeaZa tobacco-free pouches, mint-leaf snuff, as well as dried fruit, raisins, and sunflower seeds. Also, you should look to distract yourself with healthy activities – going for a swim, shooting hoops, lifting weights, running, or whatever gets you going.
If you’re thinking about quitting, TeaZa offers one of the healthiest tobacco-free solutions for you! Our tobacco-free pouches contain minerals and vitamins and are consumed by placing the pouch in your mouth or with water (as tea). It’s a healthy dip that can keep you energized and awake but also help quit chewing tobacco altogether.
Ready to Quit Chewing Tobacco?
If you’re ready to quit chewing tobacco, check out our resources to quit chewing tobacco!