Smoking, Smokeless Tobacco, Vaping and Oral Health Image

Smoking, Smokeless Tobacco, Vaping and Oral Health

Smoking Tobacco

Most people are now aware that smoking is bad for their overall health. It can cause many different medical problems and, in some cases, fatal diseases such as certian forms of cancer.  However, many people still don't realize the damage smoking does to their mouth, gums and teeth. Check out the link below for more information about the health risks of smoking and using tobacco products on your mouth.

Chewing Tobacco and Snuff:

Using chewing tobacco products can harm your health, INCLUDING your teeth, gums, tongue and throat. Oral cancer is a devastating forms of cancer and is the greatest concern associated with smokeless tobacco use.  Those who survive often experience a negative impact on their quality of life. visit the links below for more information.

Non-Cigarette Alternatives (vaping):

These products are marketed as "safer than cigarettes" however these products contain: nicotine (often in a much higer dose that a traditional cigarette) and ultrafine particles in the form of aerosol. This aerosol contains heavy metals and other volatile organic compounds such as benzene, nickel, tin, and chromium.  While some proponents like to argue that  vaping may be a better alternative that traditional smoking,  vaping and other non-cigarette alternatives are still extremely dangerous to our health. More research is needed to get the full scope of these dangers.  See below for important information about vaping and its potential impacts on your health.

Cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, and other forms of tobacco can cause oral cancer, gum Disease, and other oral health problems. People who smoke are 3 times more likely to lose all of their teeth. Over 40% of adults aged 20 to 64 who currently smoke cigarettes have untreated tooth decay 1.  Click Here to learn more about the risks associated with your oral health.

Ready to Quit?

Are you ready to quit using tobacco products and start a healthier and happier life? While it can be hard to give up tobacco products, quitting is one of the best changes you can make for your health. Below you will find resources that you can use to join the millions of ex-tobacco users who proved that quitting is possible:

Kick It California (formerly California Smokers' Helpline)
Kick It California (formerly California Smokers' Helpline) is a telephone counseling program, offering FREE sessions of individual telephone support with trained counselors. The Kick It California services have been proven in clinical trials to double a smoker’s chances of successfully quitting. The Helpline offers: 

  • one-on-one, telephone counseling to quit smoking and vaping
  • referral to local programs and
  • self-help materials.

Services are offered in six languages (English, Spanish, Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, and Vietnamese) and specialized services are available for teens, pregnant women, and tobacco chewers. The Helpline also provides information to friends and family members of tobacco users.

  • Text QUIT SMOKING to 66819
  • 800-300-8086 (English)
  • 800-600-8191 (Spanish)

Hours of operation are Monday through Friday from 7 am to 9 pm, and Saturday from 9 am to 5 pm. Voicemail and recorded messages are available 24 hours a day.

YVape is a free educational program with phone coaching support for students who have been vaping at school. For more information, please visit

National Cancer Institute
The National Cancer Institute provides smoking cessation counselors to answer smoking-related questions in English or Spanish, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Calls are toll-free within the United States.

Online, Texting, and Free Apps

QuitNet is an online, interactive program developed by the School of Public Health at Boston University. This program blends proven scientific methods with web technology to customize a smoking cessation program for you, including:

  • tools to help you quit
  • ex-smoker to smoker support
  • timely emails and lots more
  • a directory of smoking cessation classes and
  • many helpful links and resources was created by the Tobacco Control Research Branch of the National Cancer Institute, in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and the American Cancer Society. This comprehensive site provides an online guide as well as downloadable resources to quitting smoking, including:

  • Smokefree TXT - a free mobile service to receive 24/7 encouragement, advice, and tips to help you stop smoking for good
    • Adults – text QUIT to 47848
    • Young adults ready to quit dip – text SPIT to 222888
    • Veterans – text VET to 47848
    • Women – text MOM to 222888
    • Teens – text QUIT to 47848
    • Spanish – envie ESP al 47848
    • 60+ years of age – text QUIT to 47848
  • quitSTART App - free apps to help get you through the hard times and keep you motivated to quit smoking and stay smokefree.

Truth Initiative

This is Quitting is an app that specifically targets college students through its appealing social media features that include the ability to access ideas from others on the internet.

Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)

It's a myth that kicking the habit is easy. Most smokers make several attempts at quitting before finding success. Why? It's not about willpower. It's about nicotine, a powerfully addictive drug that makes the body both physically and psychologically dependent. Smokers must overcome both of these dependencies to stay smoke-free.

To maximize your success with the quitting process, consider making an appointment with your medical provider to discuss the use of complementary quitting tools to minimize withdrawal symptoms. Research has shown success rates are significantly improved when nicotine replacement products such as nicotine patches, gum, or prescription medications are coupled with a smoking cessation program.

Here is more information about some of the pharmaceutical and nicotine replacement aids available through your doctor:

Nicotine Replacement Therapy information from MedlinePlus, a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

College Campus Resources

Visit or call the health center on your college campus to make an appointment for assistance and to learn about the free tobacco cessation services available.

For UC Davis Students: