FDA Targets Smokeless Tobacco in Rural Areas

Smokeless tobacco more prevalent in rural America, according to FDA campaign

/ Author:  / Reviewed by: Anyssa Garza, PharmD

(RxWiki News) The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is expanding its “The Real Cost” campaign to rural America.

The expansion of the campaign will focus on educating white teenage boys in rural areas about the dangers of smokeless tobacco use, the FDA announced.

Dangers include nicotine addiction, gum disease, tooth loss and certain kinds of cancer. This target population was determined based on the most recent data from the FDA’s Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) study.

More than 30 percent of white males between the ages of 12 and 17 in rural areas are estimated to either experiment with or be at risk for using smokeless tobacco. This FDA estimate has around 629,000 young males in the United States at risk.

Smokeless tobacco includes dip, chew, snus and types of tobacco that dissolve when placed in the mouth.

Regardless of the type, smokeless tobacco is more common in rural areas, according to the FDA. In fact, smokeless tobacco is thought to be used twice as much in rural areas when compared to metropolitan areas.

The main message of the “The Real Cost” campaign is this: Just because tobacco is smokeless does not mean it is harmless. The FDA is illustrating this message through advertisements on a variety of platforms.

The campaign will also work with several Minor League baseball teams to break the connection between smokeless tobacco and baseball.

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Review Date: 
April 25, 2016
Last Updated:
April 26, 2016