GREELEY – Weld County residents who use smokeless tobacco products and have tried to quit know that quitting tobacco can be very difficult. There are a couple of events going on to help those who use smokeless tobacco products to take the first step to successfully quit using for good. “Through With Chew Week”, which takes place from February 17 – 23, 2013 and the Great American Spit Out (GASpO) held on Thursday, February 21st, 2013, are set to encourage people who use smokeless tobacco products prepare to quit and motivate them to go tobacco free.
Smokeless tobacco products are known by many different names. A few terms that it’s known by include smokeless, oral, chewing, spit, snus, snuff and spitless. Smokeless tobacco products are not a safe substitute to smoking and can be deadly. Harmful health effects of smokeless tobacco include:
- Mouth, tongue, esophageal, and throat cancer
- Stomach and pancreatic cancer
- Increased risk of heart disease, heart attacks and stroke
- Leukoplakia (white sores in the mouth that can become cancer)
- Receding gums, bone loss around the roots of the teeth, abrasion (wearing down) of teeth
To help in the quitting process there are a number of resources available including the Colorado QuitLine (1-800-QUIT-NOW) which is a FREE service that provides quit coaching over the phone. Those who are eligible may also qualify for up to eight weeks of FREE nicotine replacement therapy to help get over the addiction to nicotine. For more information on resources available locally to those wanting to quit or for a free “spit quit kit” contact the Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment at 970-304-6470 ext. 2386. “Spit quit kits” include information on the Colorado QuitLine, toothpicks to chew on, a large bag of sunflower seeds, and dental mirror. A flyer highlighting the local tobacco cessation support group and the 2013 schedule for the tobacco cessation class will also be included.
For more information and details about other resources in Weld County for tobacco cessation, visit www.tobaccofreeweld.com or call 970-304-6470, ext. 2386.