Yes, chewing tobacco is smokeless but the effects on your health are still quite substantial. This is especially true when it comes to your oral health. If you are a user of chewing tobacco you may experience the following:
- – Bad breath
- – Decreased sense of smell and taste
- – Teeth discoloration
- – Higher risk of getting cavities
- – Higher risk of getting oral cancer
- – Gum irritation and potentially gum disease
- – Tooth sensitivity
- – Tooth erosion
Because chewing tobacco contains 28 cancer-causing chemicals the risk is significant for the following types of cancer:
- – Mouth
- – Lip
- – Tongue
- – Pancreas
- – Voice box
- – Esophagus
- – Colon
- – Bladder
The best course of action is to kick the habit. This can be very difficult and it may take you several tries before you are finally successful. This is because addiction to nicotine has several different aspects to it: physical, psychological, behavioral, and sensory.
Talk to your dentist about getting help for your addiction. The dentist may prescribe a nicotine replacement therapy such as a patch or gum. These replacement therapies provide a steady flow of nicotine to your system, decreasing over time.
If you continue to chew tobacco you should see your dentist more frequently to be monitored for oral cancer. Early detection means that the cancer can be treated more easily and there is a greater chance of a cure.