December 03, 2013

Smokeless Tobacco and Cancer

Smokeless tobacco is tobacco that is not burned.  It is available in different forms: chewing tobacco is loose leaves or bricks, and snuff is finely cut or powdered and either loose or in pouches.

Risk of Cancer

Smokeless tobacco contains at least 28 chemicals that have been found to cause cancer.  The level of tobacco-specific nitrosamines, formed during the growing, curing, fermenting and aging of the tobacco, is directly related to the risk of cancer.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer has reported that smokeless tobacco causes oral cancer, esophageal cancer and pancreatic cancer.  Furthermore, it is associated with and may cause heart disease, gum disease and oral lesions other than cancer.

Smokeless Tobacco Is Additive

Smokeless tobacco is also considered addictive because of the amount of nicotine absorbed by the lining of the mouth.  When absorbed through mouth tissues, the nicotine goes directly into the bloodstream and is transported to the brain.

Robert G. Tupac, DDS, FACP, Inc., Diplomate, American Board of Prosthodontics (661) 325-1275 | 5060 California Ave., #170, Bakersfield, CA 93309

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