Tobacco smoking is the practice where tobacco is burned and the resulting smoke (consisting of particle and gaseous phases) is inhaled. The practice may have begun as early as 5000–3000 BC. Tobacco was introduced to Eurasia in the late 16th century where it followed common trade routes. The practice encountered criticism from its first import into the Western world onwards, but embedded itself in certain strata of a number of societies before becoming widespread upon the introduction of automated cigarette-rolling apparatus
Tobacco is an agricultural product processed from the fresh leaves of plants in the genus Nicotiana. The genus contains a number of species, however, Nicotiana tabacum is the most commonly grown. Nicotiana rustica follows as second containing higher concentrations of nicotine. These leaves are harvested and cured to allow for the slow oxidation and degradation of carotenoids in tobacco leaf. This produces certain compounds in the tobacco leaves which can be attributed to sweet hay, tea, rose oil, or fruity aromatic flavors. Before packaging, the tobacco is often combined with other additives in order to: enhance the addictive potency, shift the products pH, or improve the effects of smoke by making it more palatable. In the United States these additives are regulated to 599 substances. The product is then processed, packaged, and shipped to consumer markets. Means of consumption has greatly expanded in scope as new methods of delivering the active substances with fewer by-products have encompassed or are beginning to encompass:
Millions of teens across the nation use smokeless tobacco -- often referred to as spit, chew or dip -- with the misconception that it is less dangerous and less addictive than the tobacco used in cigarettes. The Ohio Dental Association continues to remain proactive towards educating the youth population about the dangers of smokeless tobacco.
A recent report published in the Feb. 2007 "Tobacco Control" journal cited conclusions from an ongoing American Cancer Society study which found that people who switched from cigarettes to spit tobacco were twice as likely to die from throat or mouth cancer then those who quit all tobacco use. The study also found that tobacco, whether in cigarette or spit form, contributes to health problems such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and bone loss.
The TACTIC program helps educate teens about the dangers of smokeless tobacco, spring- boarding off of a story about an Ohio man who died at the age of 31 after using smokeless tobacco since he was 13 years old. Topics covered in the program include:
-- Receding gums, tooth decay, mouth sores, bleeding gums and bad breath
-- The increased risk of leukoplakia -- white spots in the tongue which can be an early indicator of oral cancer
-- The increased risk of lip, throat, mouth, voice box, esophagus and other cancers