Everyone’s heard it—smoking causes lung cancer—but that’s only one risk that tobacco causes for individuals, families, and communities. There are plenty of other reasons to be free from tobacco: staying in control of your life, keeping your looks on point, protecting the environment, and staying healthy. Sometimes it may feel like everyone is doing it, but the truth is only 10% of youth use any type of tobacco. Check out why choosing to be free from tobacco will help you live the life you dream of. Stay In the Know—Free From Tobacco.
 
 

KNOW MORE

All forms of tobacco are addictive because they contain nicotine, which is a chemical found in the tobacco plant. Nicotine addiction is so powerful that every day in the US, more than 700 youth under age 18 become daily smokers. People often underestimate how addictive tobacco is. In fact, 3 out of 4 teen smokers become adult smokers, even if they planned on quitting after a few years. Don’t let tobacco run your life—be free from tobacco.
 

Tobacco hurts more than just your lungs. Tobacco use can affect your looks in all sorts of ways:

  • Stained Teeth
  • Tooth loss
  • Wrinkles and premature skin aging
  • Greying skin
  • Yellow finger nails
  • Bad breath

No wonder most people prefer to date non-smokers! Being tobacco-free means being free to look your best.
 

Tobacco use is still the #1 preventable cause of death in the US, taking the lives of over 480,000 people every year. Tobacco use causes chronic disease such as stroke, heart disease, COPD, and over 12 types of cancer. In fact, if no one smoked, 1 out of every 3 cases of cancer would not happen. Tobacco use causes damage from head to toe, literally hurting every part of your body.
 

Tobacco use affects our entire community, whether you choose to use it or not.

  • Cigarette butts are the #1 littered item in the US and they aren’t biodegradable. They litter our sidewalks and roadways and pollute our soil and water system.
  • Secondhand smoke causes health issues for non-smokers. In fact, 42,000 people die every year from exposure to secondhand smoke.
  • Fires caused by cigarettes kill nearly 1,000 people a year and cost billions in damages to homes and building.
  • Even your family pet can be affected; cats and dogs whose owners smoke are twice as likely to get cancer.
     

Do you know all the different types of tobacco? Have you heard something and weren’t sure whether or not it was true? Before you make a decision about tobacco use, be sure you have all the correct info.
 

  • E-Cigarettes and Vapes
    E-Cigs or Vapes are a battery-powered device that contains nicotine, flavoring, and other chemicals. There is a lot of talk about these being a safe alternative to smoking, but according the World Health Organization, there is no scientific evidence to confirm its safety. When it comes to e-cigs/vapes, keep in mind that nicotine is harmful to your health. Studies have shown they contain carcinogens and toxic chemicals, and when not used correctly, e-cigs/vapes can even explode.
     
  • Cigarettes
    Cigarettes are likely the first thing that comes to mind when you hear about tobacco. Cigarettes contain more than 4,000 different chemicals, over 60 of which are known to cause cancer.
     
  • Cigars and Cigarillos
    There are two main types of cigars: 1) traditional or premium cigars and 2) cigarillos or little cigars such as “Swisher Sweets” or “Black and Mild.” A premium cigar can contain the equivalent of an entire pack of cigarettes. Whatever the type, don’t be fooled—cigars are just as dangerous as cigarettes.
     
  • Smokeless
    Smokeless, Dip, Snuff, Snus, Spit...no matter what you call it, it’s all tobacco. Since it’s not smoked, the nicotine and chemicals are absorbed through the mouth instead of the lungs. Just because you aren’t smoking it doesn’t make it harmless! Smokeless contains 28 cancer causing agents and can wreck your mouth.
     
  • Hookah
    Hookahs may be seen as social, but it’s still smoking. A hookah is a pipe used to smoke flavored tobacco. The scary part is that a one-hour hookah session is equal to smoking over 100 cigarettes! As if the damages from smoking the tobacco weren’t enough, sharing the mouthpiece has been associated with mouth infections and other conditions such as herpes, tuberculosis, and hepatitis.
     

Want to start living a life free from tobacco? Then check out the following link for free resources, including counseling and medication, to help you quit:

http://health.frederickcountymd.gov/484/Cessation-Services
 


 

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