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Ohio Dental Association Not Giving Lip Service to New Smokeless Tobacco Product

Ohio Dental Association Not Giving Lip Service to New Smokeless Tobacco Product

The Ohio Dental Association (ODA) strongly advocates
against the use of smokeless tobacco products because of their harmful effects—particularly
the strong link to oral cancer. As a result, the ODA discounts the advertising
hype that appears to be surrounding a new smokeless tobacco product called
Revel, a "socially acceptable" alternative to cigarettes. Youngstown,
Ohio, is one of two cities where Revel will initially be marketed for
6 months.

Smokeless tobacco, in any form, is dangerous to health, said Cleveland
dentist Dr. Bruce Grbach, chairman of the ODA’s council on communication and
public service, which oversees Operation TACTIC (Teens Against Chewing Tobacco
in the Community)—a program aimed at discouraging use and raising awareness of
the harmful effects of smokeless tobacco products among elementary through high
school students.

Nicotine in Any Form Is Harmful

Dr. Grbach questions the use of Revel as an alternative to smoking, stating
that nicotine in any form is harmful. "There are a number of studies that
demonstrate that smokeless tobacco is dangerous and can cause oral cancer. This
new product is a form of smokeless tobacco, and consumers should know that using
this product exposes them to risks of oral cancer."

Revel is being introduced only in Youngstown, Ohio, and Topeka, Kansas, by
the US Smokeless Tobacco Co. It is described as a form of smokeless tobacco that
does not induce the need to expectorate, with no unpleasant tobacco flavor, and
that is "a blend of premium tobaccos and fresh mint flavor in clean and
neat, discrete, easy-to-use packs." Users will need to spit the wet packet
out when finished.

Dr. Nancy Goorey, DDS, of Columbus, who has been active for years in programs
that discourage the use of smokeless tobacco and is current chair of the ODA’s
Sports Dentistry Consultants, said that while Revel is said to be designed for
adults, it is clearly intended for new users as well. Furthermore, it is not the
taste but the nicotine, that attracts users. "Addicted individuals are not
concerned with taste, but rather with results. The flavored brands of smokeless
or spit tobacco are used to initiate new users, making the taste palatable while
addicting the individual with nicotine—and putting them at risk for cancer
because of the carcinogens."

In addition to nicotine, smokeless tobacco products often contain ingredients
such as cadmium (used in car batteries), formaldehyde (for embalming),
benzopyrene (cancer-causing agent), and other chemicals.

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