by Heather Miller
Personal grooming is the art of cleaning, grooming, and maintaining parts of the body — including your tongue.
Check out a tongue-cleaning tutorial above — the new smokeless tobacco prevention TV spot produced by EnviroMedia for the Texas Department of State Health Service’s “Spit It Out” campaign.
The shocking TV spot educates teens about the harmful effects of smokeless tobacco and dissuades use before it starts. The public service announcement launched on July 5 and was on display at the Texas FFA Convention in July.
In addition to causing bleeding gums, mouth sores, and cancer, using smokeless tobacco can cause a medical condition called black hairy tongue, which is the presence of bacteria or fungi in the mouth that can make the tongue appear black and hairy. According to the National Cancer Institute, smokeless tobacco contains 28 cancer-causing substances. More nicotine is absorbed from a dose of smokeless tobacco than from a cigarette.
After an increase in smoking ordinances, the tobacco industry searched to market products that were socially acceptable and not held to the same strict indoor air quality regulations as cigarettes.
Big Tobacco’s answer: smokeless, spitless, and odorless. Smokeless tobacco products are marketed as “concert-friendly,” “dual use,” and “pleasure for whenever.” They also come in smaller packages and are hidden from sight during use. Currently, these products are not subject to the same tax rates as cigarettes — they are taxed by weight, which makes them more affordable.
The Family Smoking Prevention & Tobacco Control Act gave the U.S. Food and Drug Administration comprehensive authority to regulate the manufacturing, marketing, and sale of tobacco products. In September 2009, federal officials banned the sale of flavored cigarettes. However, the ban does not include such tobacco products as flavored small cigars, cigarillos, or snus (a moist tobacco powder product in what looks like a miniature tea bag).
Though Freud’s childhood development theory may or may not hold true, these smokeless oral fixations are harmful. People, spit it out!