Friday, October 8, 2010

QUESTION: What are the health risks of chewing tobacco as compared to smoking?

ANSWER: Some people who have been persuaded to give up smoking have ended up placing the tobacco directly inside their mouth instead—in the mistaken belief that smokeless tobacco (a.k.a. spit tobacco, chew, chaw, dip, plug, etc.) is less toxic and dangerous. In 2004, about 3% of American adults used spit tobacco. This percentage is likely to increase as more public establishments enforce smoking bans across the country.

Users can get their tobacco fix by “dipping” snuff (a fine tobacco, either moist or dry is held between the bottom lip or cheek and gum) or chewing (a wad of leaves, either shredded, twisted or in brick form, is placed between the cheek and gum). If you hold an average-sized plug in your mouth for 30 minutes, you’ll end up with as much nicotine as if you had smoked four cigarettes.

Smokeless tobacco includes more than 28 cancer-causing substances, including the tobacco-specific carcinogen nitrosamines. Some products also contain more than 3,000 chemicals. But that’s not all: Because tobacco often has an unpleasant taste, smokeless brands tend to be loaded with sugar, and that leads to tooth decay. The gritty material in the tobacco leaves wears down the surfaces of the teeth, stains the enamel and scratches the soft tissues in the mouth, allowing the nicotine and other chemicals to enter the blood stream directly. As an added bonus, your gums will likely recede, and you’ll develop oral lesions, a black hairy tongue and bad breath. Some smokeless tobacco products also contain salt that can raise blood pressure in vulnerable persons and may cause kidney disease.

I haven’t even mentioned cancer yet: Long-term snuff users have a 50% higher incidence of cancer of the mouth and pharynx, as well as more malignancies of the larynx and esophagus.

And here’s something you may not have considered: Tobacco chewers must spit—and thereby spread their germs to the rest of us. (About one in three Major League baseball players chew, and if you’ve ever watched a ballgame, you know it’s not pretty.)

The bottom line? If you chew, you have not kicked the nicotine habit. The smoking-cessation products approved by the FDA, such as gum and patches, are the safest available sources of nicotine for those trying to quit. There’s also tobacco-free snuff made from mint, clover, tea or alfalfa.

(Answered by:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Addiction: defined

Historically, addiction has been defined with regard solely to psychoactive substances (for example alcohol, tobacco and other drugs) which cross the blood-brain barrier once ingested, temporarily altering the chemical milieu of the brain.
Many people, both psychology professionals and laymen, now feel that there should be accommodation made to include psychological dependency on such things as gambling, food, sex, pornography, computers, video games, internet, work, exercise, idolising, watching TV or certain types of non-pornographic videos, spiritual obsession, pain, cutting and shopping so these behaviors count as 'addictions' as well and cause guilt, shame, fear, hopelessness, failure, rejection, anxiety, or humiliation symptoms associated with, among other medical conditions, depression and epilepsy.


Need addiction services ?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Blew it.

Well, thanks to my boss I am back to a pack and a half as of today... can't say I wasn't trying. Maybe I need to take up yoga or something to help with the stress. I have also heard that having carrot sticks or stick pretzels around help or even knitting because it keeps your hands busy.

I am going to have to try something to kick this habit.

Do you need an addiction counselorto help?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

What is nicotine addiction?

Nicotine is the tobacco plant's natural protection from being eaten by insects. It is a super toxin that, drop for drop, is more lethal than strychnine or diamondback rattlesnake venom, and three times deadlier than arsenic. Yet, amazingly, by chance, this natural insecticide's chemical signature is so similar to the neurotransmitter acetylcholine that once inside the brain it fits a host of chemical locks permitting it direct and indirect control over the flow of more than 200 neuro-chemicals.
Within ten seconds of that first-ever inhaled puff, possibly through dizzy, coughing and six shades of green, nicotine arrived at the brain's reward pathways where it generated an unearned flood of dopamine, resulting in an immediate yet possibly unrecognized "aaah" reward sensation. Sensing it would cause most first-time inhalers to soon return to steal more. Nicotine also activated the body's fight or flight pathways releasing adrenaline, and select serotonin pathways impacting mood and impulsivity.

(**Find more at

You can overcome addiction!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Starting Younger and Younger

I have a confession. My friend and I started experimenting with smoking at a very young age. We started with stupid stuff we could find around the house, and let me tell you even though most teas are herbs- they do not smoke very well.

Now I am a chain smoker, smoking about a pack to a pack and a half a day. And I am trying to quit, I watched my boyfriends grandmother die of COPD, basically suffocating to death as parts of her lungs died. I don't want to go that way.

So here I will share my progress to quitting and other tid-bits about drugs in general, their addictiveness, success stories, as well as covering both legal and illegal types.

Thanks for the support~ Ellcie