Smokeless Tobacco: Is It Really Doing Damage?
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close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigaretteCigarettes and mouth cancer are closely related in many people’s minds. Smokeless tobacco is not as famous as cigarettes for causing serious problems. The question is: Have you even thought about if the effects of smokeless tobacco are causing harm to your body? And if so, how much damage is it causing? There has now been 40 plus years of research to observe if smokeless tobacco products really do cause any type of cancer.


As always, there is a long line of individuals who are against cigarettes and even smokeless tobacco products. Dentists seem to be at the top of the list of people against smokeless tobacco. Many of these dentists claim that they have seen a sufficient amount of cases of mouth cancer that they think are caused by using smokeless tobacco. Luckily, after all of those years of research, there are some interesting facts relating to this debate.


Oklahoma is a great example to prove this point. They are one of the most extreme cases because they are 11% higher than the national average of people affected by mouth cancer annually. So with these statistics already leaning in the dentists favor, we know that according to the SEER program at the National Cancer Institute, the national incidence rate for mouth cancer is 23 cases per 100,000. Comparing with Oklahoma, they have census dada showing there are 716,468 men age 45+ so we can say that 183 cases of mouth cancer per year.


What ends up being the most fun is when you break this information down a step more. There are about 2040 dentists practicing in Oklahoma currently. When you take the number of cases per year and the number of dentists it turns out on average each dentist would only see a case of mouth cancer caused by smokeless tobacco every 11 years! The claim that there are a lot of cases of mouth cancer caused by smokeless tobacco products just could not possibly be true.


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