Smokeless Tobacco

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Forms of Smokeless Tobacco

 

• The two main types of smokeless tobacco in the United States are chewing tobacco and snuff.1,2

 

• Chewing tobacco comes in the form of loose leaf, plug, or twist.2,3,4

 

• Snuff is finely ground tobacco that can be dry, moist, or packaged in sachets.2,3,4

 

• Although some forms of snuff can be used by sniffing or inhaling into the nose,2 most smokeless tobacco users place the product between their gum and cheek.3 Users suck or chew on the tobacco, and saliva can be spat out or swallowed.3,4

 

• The tobacco industry has also developed newer smokeless tobacco products such as lozenges, tablets, tabs, strips, and sticks.4,6

 

Health Effects

 

Smokeless Tobacco and Cancer

 

• Smokeless tobacco contains 28 cancer-causing agents (carcinogens).2,4

 

• Smokeless tobacco is a known cause of human cancer; it increases the risk of developing cancer of the oral cavity and pancreas.4,7

 

Smokeless Tobacco and Oral Health

 

• Smokeless tobacco is also strongly associated with leukoplakia—a precancerous lesion of the soft tissue in the mouth that consists of a white patch or plaque that cannot be scraped off.3

 

• Smokeless tobacco is associated with recession of the gums, gum disease, and tooth decay.3,6

 

Smokeless Tobacco and Reproductive Health

 

• Smokeless tobacco use during pregnancy increases the risks for preeclampsia (i.e., a condition that may include high blood pressure, fluid retention, and swelling), premature birth, and low birth weight.4

 

• Smokeless tobacco use by men causes reduced sperm count and abnormal sperm cells.4

 

Smokeless Tobacco and Nicotine Addiction

 

• Smokeless tobacco use can lead to nicotine addiction and dependence.2,4

 

• Adolescents who use smokeless tobacco are more likely to become cigarette smokers.3

 

• Smokeless tobacco is a significant health risk and is not a safe substitute for smoking cigarettes.2

 

Smokeless Tobacco Use in the United States

 

Smokeless tobacco use in the United States is higher among—

 

• Young white males

 

• American Indians/Alaska Natives

 

• People living in southern and north central states, and

 

• People who are employed in blue collar occupations or service/laborer jobs or who are unemployed8

 

Adults and Smokeless Tobacco

 

• 3.3% of adults (aged 18 years and older) are current smokeless tobacco users.9

• 6.5% of men are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 0.4% of women are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 7.0% of American Indian/Alaska Natives are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 4.3% of whites are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 1.3% of Hispanics are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 0.7% of African Americans are current smokeless tobacco users9

• 0.6% of Asian Americans are current smokeless tobacco users9
 

High School Students and Smokeless Tobacco

 

• 7.9% of all high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

• 13.4% of male high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

• 2.3% of female high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

• 10.3% of white high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

• 4.7% of Hispanic high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

• 1.2% of African American high school students are current smokeless tobacco users10

 

Middle School Students and Smokeless Tobacco

 

• 2.6% of middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 4.1% of male middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 1.2% of female middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 3.4% of Hispanic middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 2.8% of white middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 2.0% of Asian middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

• 1.7% of African-American middle school students are current smokeless tobacco users11

NOTE: For all data tables above, "current" user is defined as using smokeless tobacco products on 1 or more of the 30 days preceding the survey.

 

Tobacco Industry Information

 

The five largest tobacco manufacturers have spent record amounts of money on smokeless tobacco advertising and promotions:1

 

• $354.12 million in 2006

• $250.79 million in 2005

 

The two leading smokeless tobacco brands for users aged 12 years or older are—

 

• Skoal® (with 25% of the market share) and

• Copenhagen® (with 24% of the market share).5

 

References

 

1. Federal Trade Commission. Smokeless Tobacco Report for the Year 2006.
(PDF–689 KB) Washington, DC: Federal Trade Commission; 2009 [accessed 2009 Aug 24].

 

2. National Cancer Institute. Smokeless Tobacco or Health: An International Perspective . Bethesda, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute; 1992 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Preventing Tobacco Use Among Young People: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 1994 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

4. World Health Organization. Smokeless Tobacco and Some Tobacco-Specific N-Nitrosamines . (PDF–3.18 MB) International Agency for Research on Cancer Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans Vol. 89. Lyon, France: World Health Organization, 2007 [accessed 2009 April 27].

 

5. Maxwell JC. The Maxwell Report: The Smokeless Tobacco Industry in 2008. Richmond, VA: John C. Maxwell, Jr., April 2009 [cited 2009 May 13].

 

6. Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. Smokeless Tobacco and Kids. (PDF–144 KB) Washington: Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, 2009 [accessed 2009 Aug 24].

 

7. World Health Organization. Summaries and Evaluations: Tobacco Products, Smokeless (Group 1) . Lyon, France: World Health Organization, International Agency for Research on Cancer, 1998 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

8. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Reducing the Health Consequences of Smoking: 25 Years of Progress. A Report of the Surgeon General . Bethesda, Rockville (MD): U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 1989 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

9. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Results From the 2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: Detailed Tables . Rockville (MD): Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Office of Applied Studies, 2007 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

10. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2007. (PDF–4.47 MB) Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2007;57(SS-4):1–136 [accessed 2009 Feb 9].

 

11. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2006 National Youth Tobacco Survey and Key Prevalence Indicators (PDF–167 KB) [accessed 2009 Apr 27].

 

 

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