As Valentine’s Day is approaching, remember that nothing stops Cupid’s arrow faster than a mouth full of spit tobacco. As others celebrate by exchanging cards, gifts and kisses, spit tobacco users find themselves alone — after all, who wants to risk getting slipped a wad of chew during an kiss?
But avoiding a solitary evening isn’t the only reason to say no to spit tobacco use. In addition to causing bad breath and unsightly stained teeth (not to mention those little flecks of tobacco that get mired between teeth), spit tobacco can be deadly.
Like its cousin, the form of tobacco smoked in cigarettes, spit tobacco contains nicotine, the substance that causes people to become addicted.
And smokeless does not mean harmless, as the two forms of tobacco both contain cancer-causing poisons. Each year approximately 30,500 new cases of mouth and throat cancer are diagnosed and over 8,000 people die of these cancers.
More horrifying than the physical disfigurement caused by these cancers and the surgeries needed to remove them is the fact that almost three-fourths of the cases of mouth and throat cancer can be directly attributed to use of tobacco and alcohol.
The Southern Coalfields Tobacco Prevention Coalition has joined other tobacco prevention coalitions in the state to promote the West Virginia Save Face, Stop Spit Tobacco Campaign.
This Valentine’s Day, I hope you give your loved ones a gift they will treasure: Stop using spit tobacco. Call the WV Tobacco Quit line: 800-QUIT-NOW.
Donald R. Reed Jr., M.A. CTTS
Director of Special Projects (Tobacco Reduction)
Southern Coalfields Tobacco Prevention Coalition Network Office
- Our Readers Speak
Submit your opinion to Our Readers Speak section
The Register-Herald welcomes your opinion. Please e-mail your letters, through your computer's mail program, to firstname.lastname@example.org or via the postal service to: Our Readers Speak, P.O. Box 2398, Beckley, WV 25802.
Our Readers Speak — Sunday, March 9, 2014
Thanks for perfect Valentine’s Day
Our Readers Speak — Saturday, March 8, 2013
Class AAA Region 3 seeding was correct
Small businesses suffering from HIT
Our Readers Speak — Friday, March 7, 2013
Thanks to ambulance crew, ER doctor, staff
Our Readers Speak — Thursday, March 6, 2014
Groundhog predicts economy and weather
Our Readers Speak — Wednesday, March 5, 2014
New mayor’s actions are surprising to reader
Our Readers Speak — Sunday, March 2, 2013
All is not well with our beloved nation
Our Readers Speak — Saturday, March 1, 2013
Capito not a friend to many West Virginians
Our Readers Speak — Friday, Feb. 28, 2014
God is being cast out of our everyday lives
Why do veterans have to pay for plates?
Our Readers Speak — Thursday, February 27, 2014
Drug registry system could help with problem
Minimum wage cartoon somewhat inaccurate
- More Our Readers Speak Headlines
- Submit your opinion to Our Readers Speak section