FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

QUIT SMOKELESS TOBACCO DURING THROUGH WITH CHEW WEEK, FEB. 15-21

OKLAHOMA CITY – February 12, 2015 — What would it take for you to quit chewing smokeless tobacco? Many believe smokeless tobacco is a safe alternative to cigarettes, when in fact it can cause cancer of the mouth, esophagus and pancreas, and contains up to four times the highly addictive nicotine found in cigarettes. During Through With Chew Week, Feb. 15-21, the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline aims to reduce the use of smokeless tobacco in Oklahoma with free quit coaching.

“Quit Coaches at the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline are specially trained to provide smokeless tobacco users with personalized quit plans to help you quit for good,” said Jason, Quit Coach™ for the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline. “We are there for you 24/7 to provide nonjudgmental support throughout your quitting journey.”

According to the 2014 Surgeon General’s Report, smokeless tobacco use has increased steadily since 2004. Several contributing factors include increased advertising by the tobacco industry, the introduction of a wide variety of new smokeless products and flavors at low price points, and marketing messages intended to specifically appeal to current or former smokers.

During Through With Chew Week, start your journey to quitting by calling the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline. Double your chances of quitting by combining the Helpline’s free quit coaching with a free two week supply of nicotine patches, gum or lozenges.

Smokeless Facts:

What harm can dipping cause to your mouth?

  • Smokeless tobacco use may cause cancer of the mouth.
  • Sugar in smokeless tobacco may cause decay in exposed tooth roots.
  • Dip and chew can cause your gums to pull away from the teeth where the tobacco is held. The gums do not grow back.
  • Leathery white patches and red sores are common and can turn into cancer.

Why is smokeless tobacco addictive?

  • Nicotine, found in all tobacco products, is a highly addictive drug that acts in the brain and throughout the body.
  • Dip and chew contain more nicotine than cigarettes.
  • Holding an average-size dip in your mouth for 30 minutes gives you as much nicotine as smoking three cigarettes. Someone who dips two cans a week gets as much or more nicotine as a pack-a-day smoker.

Are you ready to quit? Take the Readiness Quiz by visiting OKhelpline.com/readiness-quiz.

“Tobacco dependence is a chronic, relapsing condition,” said Tracey Strader, executive director of the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET). “Even if you’ve tried to quit before, it is important to never, ever give up. Shortly after quitting, your health will improve, you’ll have more money in your pocket and, most importantly, you will have more quality time to spend with loved ones.”

To connect with free professional quit coaches from the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline call 1-800-QUIT NOW (1-800-784-8669) or visit www.OKhelpline.com. To learn more about Through With Chew Week and for more information about the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, visit www.OKHelpline.com.

Connect with the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline through social media by liking the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline on Facebook or following @OKhelpline on Twitter.

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The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline is a free service for Oklahomans wanting to quit tobacco. Funding is primarily provided by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), in partnership with the Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Oklahoma Employees Group Insurance Division and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline has served more than 250,000 Oklahomans since 2003 and was ranked the top quitline for reaching tobacco users seeking treatment in FY2013 by the North American Quitline Consortium.

The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) serves as a partner and bridge builder for organizations working towards shaping a healthier future for all Oklahomans. TSET provides leadership at the intersections of health by working with local coalitions and initiatives across the state, by cultivating innovative and life-changing research, and by working across public and private sectors to develop, support, implement and evaluate creative strategies to take advantage of emerging opportunities to improve the public’s health. TSET – Better Lives Through Better Health. To learn more go to:www.tset.ok.gov.

For more information contact:
Elyse Maxwell
elysem@tset.ok.gov
(405) 568-8568