Be Tobacco Free
- Be tobacco free! Don't use tobacco in any form. If you are using tobacco, the VA can help you quit. Avoid secondhand smoke.
If you are pregnant, both you and your baby will benefit when you quit using tobacco.
- Quitting smoking is the single most important thing you
can do to improve your health and protect the health of your family members.
Smoking harms nearly every organ of the body. Using tobacco causes many diseases
and affects your overall health. Quitting smoking or other forms of tobacco has
benefits in the short- and long-term for you and your loved ones. It's never too late to quit, as your health
will improve at any age after quitting tobacco use.
- All forms of tobacco are harmful. This includes cigars,
pipes, snuff, snus, chewing tobacco and electronic cigarettes.
- Tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke kill
approximately 443,000 people in the United States each year. It is the largest
cause of preventable illness and death in the United States.
- Tobacco use is a cause of:
- Heart disease
- Complications of pregnancy
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Secondhand smoke is associated with:
- Heart attacks
- Asthma attacks
- Pregnancy problems such as miscarriages and low birth weight
- Damaged sperm which can reduce fertility and harm fetal development
- Breathing secondhand smoke has immediate harmful effects
on your health and increases the risk of heart attack. People who already have
heart disease are at especially high risk.
- There is no safe level of secondhand smoke. Even brief
exposure can be dangerous.
- Talk to your VA health care provider about help with
quitting smoking. The most effective treatment is a combination of FDA-approved medications and
behavioral counseling. Effective counseling can range from brief counseling
provided in primary care to more intensive support in a VA smoking cessation
program to quitline counseling through 1-855-QUIT-VET. Talk with your provider
about what will work best for you and what is available at your VA.
- Good things happen as soon as you quit. You will:
- Have more energy and breathe easier.
- Save money that you can spend on other things.
- Find that your clothes, car, and home smell better.
- Have fewer wrinkles, and no stains on your skin and nails.
- Discover that food smells and tastes better.
- Feel good about quitting.
- Protect your family members and friends from secondhand smoke.
- Be a good role model for your kids or grandkids.
- You may think of other reasons, too.
- If you are pregnant and quit smoking, your baby will:
- Be healthier.
- Get more oxygen.
- Be less likely to be born too soon.
- Be less
likely to have a very low birth weight.
- Be more likely to come home from the hospital on the same day
that you come home.
- Have fewer colds and ear infections.
- Be likely to have fewer asthma and wheezing problems.
- Be at lower
risk for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
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the content that is on the site.
If you have questions or interest in making a healthy
living change, please see your primary care team at the VA facility in which you
receive health care. You can also call 1-855-QUIT-VET to talk with a counselor
- Snuff: Ground or pulverized tobacco, that is generally
insufflated or "snuffed" through the nose. It is a type of smokeless tobacco.
There are several types, but traditionally it means Dry/European nasal
snuff. In the United States and Canada, "snuff" can also refer to dipping
tobacco, which is applied to the gums rather than inhaled.
- Dipping tobacco: Also known as moist snuff, spit
tobacco, a lip, or a lippy dippy, a form of smokeless tobacco. It is commonly
referred to as dip. A small clump of dip is 'pinched' out of the tin and placed
between the lower lip and the gums. The dip rests on the inside lining of the
mouth usually for 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the user's preference. Dip
tobacco often causes the user to produce excess saliva while dipping. This is
typically spat onto the ground or in a container, because swallowing can cause
irritation to the esophagus, and induce nausea and vomiting.
- Snus: A moist powder tobacco product consumed by placing it
under the lip for extended periods of time. Snus is a form of snuff that is used
in a manner similar to American dipping tobacco, but typically does not result
in the need for spitting.
- Electronic cigarette: An electronic cigarette,
e-cigarette or personal vaporizer, is a battery-powered device that provides
inhaled doses of nicotine by way of a vaporized solution. This vapor also
provides a flavor and physical sensation similar to that of inhaled tobacco
smoke, while no smoke or combustion is actually involved in its operation. An
electronic cigarette takes the form of some manner of elongated tube, though
many are designed to resemble the outward appearance of real smoking products,
like cigarettes, cigars, and pipes. Another common design is the "pen-style", so
named for its visual resemblance to a ballpoint pen. Most electronic cigarettes
are reusable devices with replaceable and refillable parts. A number of
disposable electronic cigarettes have also been developed. See FDA Web site for
a warning about these products:
- Secondhand smoke: The smoke released from the burning end of a cigarette, cigar, or pipe, and the
smoke exhaled by the smoker.