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    Education and training to help people quit smoking


    Chew is tobacco that is not smoked. It is placed between the cheek and gums. Nicotine gets in the body through the lining of the mouth. Other names are smokeless tobacco, spit tobacco, dip, snuff or snus.

    Nicotine and Chew

    • The amount of nicotine you get depends on:
      • Brand
      • How much you use
      • How long you leave it in
    • An average-size dip left in your mouth for 30 minutes can give you as much nicotine as smoking 3 cigarettes.

    What’s in Chew?

    In addition to nicotine, chew contains at least 28 cancer-causing chemicals like:

    • Polonium 210 – used to make sheet plastics
    • Benzene – found in rubber cement
    • Nitrosamines- can cause cancer

    Other chemicals:

    • Cadmium - used in batteries
    • Cyanide - poison
    • Arsenic – found in rat poison
    • Lead - once used in paint

    Health Risks

    • Cancer Chew can cause cancer of the mouth, tongue, cheek, gum, throat and pancreas.
    • Mouth lesions. About 3 out of 4 daily chewers have leukoplakia, white patches in the mouth that can cause cancer.
    • Heart disease. The nicotine in chew can make heart rate and blood pressure go up, which can lead to heart disease.
    • Gum disease. Even with regular dental care, chew can cause tooth loss, receding gums, stained teeth, and bad breath.
    • Chew contains a lot of sugar that can weaken teeth and cause cavities.

    Warning Signs 

    Talk with your doctor if you have any of the following:

    • A lump in the neck
    • Change in the voice
    • A growth or white spots in the mouth
    • Hard time swallowing
    • Earache that won’t go away
    • Blood in saliva or phlegm
    • Changes in skin

    Quitting Chew

    The Helpline provides free help tobacco chewers quit. Hundreds of tobacco chewers have already quit. You can too!

    Call the California Tobacco Chewers’ Helpline at 1-800-844-CHEW to get started. Click HERE for info on how to quit chew.

    Other Resources

    Free Smokers' Helpline Services


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