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Risk Of Smokeless Tobacco

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

Chewing tobacco and snuff are the two essential forms of smokeless tobacco. Chewing tobacco typically involves chewing leaves or plugs that eaters usually place in their cheek pouches and chew. Snuff is finely grounded tobacco that eaters dip between their gums and lower lip.

Many people are under the impression that smokeless tobacco does less damage as compared to smoking. But that’s hardly the case. Smokeless tobacco too has numerous ill-effects and can cause health-related severe consequences.

Health effects of Smokeless Tobacco

Smokeless Tobacco – a deadly addictive?

Every smoker experiences withdrawal symptoms, which typically involves a strong urge to smoke. Well, a smokeless tobacco user does not feel the same symptoms because the nicotine gets absorbed into the bloodstream via the mouth, so it takes longer to reach the brain.

Once it reaches the brain, it causes the brain to release adrenaline pumping kind of compounds called norepinephrine. These excitatory neurotransmitters pump up the body and give it a significant high. After the nicotine effect dies down, the brain stops releasing norepinephrine; thus, smokeless tobacco users start to feel fatigued, depressed, and low.

In reality, smokeless tobacco is actually just as deleterious as smoking tobacco in the traditional manner. While smokeless tobacco may no longer contain the same carcinogen which is implicated in ordinary tobacco, the former also contains areca nut, a substance which is already proven to be a carcinogen.

Dr. M.G. Kartheeka, MBBS, MD

Health Risks Associated with Smokeless Tobacco

No form of smokeless tobacco is safe. People who chew or snuff tobacco also intake the same amount of nicotine as regular smokers and are known to expose their bodies to at least 30 cancerous chemicals.

The major kinds of cancers associated with Smokeless tobacco include:

  • Cancer of the oesophagus
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Mouth, tongue, cheek, and gum cancer, to name a few

Smokeless tobacco causes a wide array of other health problems too.

Oral, oesophageal and pancreatic cancers are commonly implicated because of the use of smokeless tobacco. Smokeless tobacco is also a reason for elevated blood pressure up to 90 minutes after its consumption.

Dr. Ashish Bajaj, M.B.B.S., M.D.

Teeth and Poor Dental Health

Chewing or snuffing tobacco can make your teeth yellowish and give you bad breath. Additionally, they can also cause dental problems, which can be extremely painful and costly to rectify.

Cardiac Ailments

Smokeless tobacco can also cause numerous heart ailments which include:

  • Various kinds of heart diseases and high blood pressure
  • Increased changes of heart attack and strokes

Also Read: Why Does Nicotine Make You Poop: Decoding Its Effects on Digestion

Risks During Pregnancy

Ladies who are pregnant are at an increased risk of complications if they consume tobacco in any form – smoking or smokeless. For them,

  • There is an increased risk of premature delivery
  • Stillbirth

Read More: Health Hazards of Smoking

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for educational/awareness purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition. The reader should consult a registered medical practitioner to determine the appropriateness of the information and before consuming any medication. PharmEasy does not provide any guarantee or warranty (express or implied) regarding the accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of the information; and disclaims any liability arising thereof.

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