2013-03-07 / Top News

Help available for users of smoke-less tobacco

Emphasizing the fact that spit tobacco is not a safe alternative to smoking, the North Dakota Department of Health’s (NDDoH) Tobacco Prevention and Control Program encourages spittobacco users to get help with quitting.

“Now that all North Dakota workplaces have become smoke-free, there is concern that more people will begin turning to smokeless tobacco products, like chewing tobacco, dip, snuff and snus,” Krista Headland, director of the NDDoH’s Tobacco Prevention and Control Program, said. “These products are not a safe alternative to smoking. They all contain addictive nicotine and many harmful chemicals. Smokeless tobacco use increases the risk of lip, tongue, cheek and mouth cancers and can cause other cancers, heart disease and strokes, high blood pressure, tooth decay and gum disease.”

In North Dakota, spit tobacco is used by 8.2 percent of adults and 13.6 percent of students in grades nine through 12. Boys in grades nine through 12 use spit tobacco at a rate of 22.2 percent, and 14.8 percent of adult males are spit-tobacco users.

“Tobacco users can use the NDQuits telephone, online and mobile services to help them through the process of quitting,” Headland said.

Along with counseling services and support, NDQuits also offers free nicotine patches, gum or lozenges for those who qualify.

For help with quitting spit tobacco or other smokeless tobacco products, visit NDQuits at 1-800-QUITNOW (1-800-784-8669) or www.ndhealth.gov/ndquits.

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