There are many myths that circulate about tobacco, both “spit” and “chew.” Below are some common myths and facts about spit tobacco and tobacco use.
1. Myth:There is no evidence that "chew” is dangerous.
Fact: The evidence is clear. It may take only a few months to develop ugly white sores in the mouth, which can turn into cancer.
2. Myth: “Chew” must be safe, because athletes use it.
Fact: “Chew” can cause oral health disease which could lead to cancer of the cheek, tongue and mouth. Chew can also contribute to heart disease.
3. Myth: It is easy to quit using tobacco.
Fact: It’s hard to quit! Most people don’t succeed in quitting their chew/dip tobacco habit the first time they try. Many find it too hard to quit, even when tobacco use has caused them to get cancer or heart disease.
4. Myth:A little bit of “chew” nowand then won’t get me hooked.
Fact: It doesn’t take a lot to become addicted to “chew.” It contains more nicotine than cigarettes.
5. Myth:My friends use “chew” and it’s not hurting them.
Fact: If your friends are regular users of “chew,” ask them to show you the area in their mouths where they hold the tobacco. You’ll probably see white patches or sores.
6. Myth:Cigarette smoking is harmful, but spit tobacco is safe to use.
Fact: Many people assume that smokeless tobacco is an okay alternative to smoking. As a result of this false assumption, there has been a recent resurgence in the use of chew/dip tobacco. However, current scientific information has revealed that chew/dip tobacco is not a safe alternative to smoking cigarettes. In fact, snuff contains 10 times as much of a cancer-causing agent as cigarettes.
7. Myth:No one ever died from using “chew.”
Fact: Sean Marsee, a high school track star, died at the age of 18, because he used “chew,” which caused mouth cancer. In 1998, Bob Leslie, a baseball coach from Sonoma California died from oral cancer at the age of 31, after beginning to use chew when he was 13 years old.
8. Myth:Tobacco can be sold legally to anyone of any age.
Fact: It is against the law in most states for anyone to sell tobacco to people under the age of 18.