From the way tobacco companies make it sound, you’d think that smokeless tobacco is safer. Far from it.
Cigarettes contain roughly one milligram of nicotine, while a ‘dip’ of smokeless contains 1.2 milligrams. The newer products like orbs and sticks contain up to 3.1 milligrams – like smoking three cigarettes at once! And the extra nicotine can make the addiction harder to kick.
These products are touted as being more “discreet,” but there is nothing discreet about their effects. Smokeless tobacco can cause cancer in as little as five years of regular use. In fact, smokeless tobacco users are more at risk for oral cancer than non-users; and constant exposure to tobacco juice causes cancer of the esophagus, pharynx, larynx, stomach and pancreas. Moreover, spit tobacco causes leukoplakia, a disease of the mouth that can lead to cancer. And 60-78% of smokeless users have these ugly oral lesions.