8 Things You Can Do to Prevent Your Kids From Using Chewing Tobacco

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8 Things You Can Do to Prevent Your Kids From Using Chewing Tobacco

Bill Tuttle was a major league baseball player who lost his battle with oral cancer in 1998 after a five-year struggle with the disease. A good friend and contemporary of Joe Garagiola, Bill endured five surgeries that resulted in his inability to speak or swallow and left him severely disfigured.

As a follow up to an earlier blog about tobacco associated oral cancer among professional athletes, here are 8 steps developed by the Oral Cancer Foundation you can take to discourage your kids from ever starting with “spit tobacco”.

  1.       Talk to them.

Parents who talk to their children are more likely to have a positive effect in influencing their behavior.

  1.       Make Your Feelings Clear

Let children know how you feel about their behavior with respect to tobacco usage.

  1.       Help Children Decode Ads

Many tobacco ads and products appeal to an increasingly younger audience. Help kids understand the truth of these ads.

  1.       Give Them a Reality Check

Let children know that most people don’t use tobacco products, including spit tobacco, and that it’s not the cool thing to do.

  1.       Emphasize Health.

Children are notoriously unconcerned about health. (Remember those days!). Educate them as to the serious health consequences of tobacco use.

  1.       Emphasize Addiction.

Some people feel that nicotine is as addictive as heroin! The advent of e-cigarettes and “vape-pens” only makes the problem worse. The younger children are when they start experimenting with tobacco, the more likely they are to suffer severe consequences.

  1.       Don’t Use Spit Tobacco Yourself.

“Do what I say and not what I do” is not an option here. The same applies to your daily oral hygiene practices.

  1.       Impose Consequences.

Children need to know that there will be consequences for unacceptable behavior, including the use of tobacco products. No exceptions!

 

Any questions? Don’t hesitate to contact me or the office, Dr. Laurence Stone in Doylestown, PA, today to schedule your next appointment and we can talk more about this. See you soon!

 

 

 

 

10 Athletes Who Fought Oral Cancer

Tony Gwynn #19

1.Tony Gwynn
Recently the baseball world was saddened by the death of Tony Gwynn. only 54 when he lost his battle with oral cancer. Tony inspired fans for 20 years while playing for the Padres. This prompted me to research other athletes who may have had oral cancer and I was shocked by the names I found! Indeed, according to the Oral Cancer Foundation, 115 new individuals will be diagnosed with this insidious disease each day in the United States.

2. Babe Ruth
Born in 1895, Babe, the quintessential baseball player, was only 53 when he lost his life to nasopharyngeal cancer. Like many baseball players the Babe chewed tobacco. In fact he began chewing tobacco when he was 5 years old!

3.Curt Flood
Curt Flood played for the St. Louis Cardinals and the Washington Senators, losing his life to oral cancer on January 20,1997. He was only 49.

4. Brett Butler
Born in 1957, Brett played for the Mets and Dodgers before being diagnosed with his oral cancer. He beat it !

5. Bill Tuttle
Baseball management

6. Hubert Green
One of the most successful professional golfers, Hubie Green was born on December 28, 1946. A smoker, Hubert beat his cancer and was able to return to the game he loves.

7. Jim Thorpe
Perhaps the most famous American athlete of all time, Jim Thorpe died penniless in 1953 from oral cancer.

8. Charles Robert Hamilton, Sr.
Charles “Bobby” Hamilton was a well-respected NASCAR driver who lost his battle with oral cancer in 2007 at the age of 50.

9. Donnie Walsh
Donnie Walsh was an NBA executive who worked with the N.Y. Knicks and Indiana Pacers during the course of his career. He was a smoker who survived cancer of the tongue.

10. Jim Kelly
A Hall of Fame quarterback with the Buffalo Bills, Jim is now battling oral cancer and has had several disfiguring surgeries but is fighting to survive.

In my next blog: How to keep your children away from smokeless tobacco!

Any questions? Don’t hesitate to contact me or the office, Dr. Laurence Stone in Doylestown, PA, today to schedule your next appointment and we can talk more about this. See you soon!

Photo courtesy of TheBaseballJournal.com

Oral cancer – Why 3 is 3 Too Many

doctorwithpatient

Three. That’s the number of patients I have known in my career that I have helped to diagnose with oral cancer. Doesn’t seem like a lot but believe me, you wouldn’t want to be one of them!

Consider the facts:

  • The five-year survival rate for oral cancer is only 50% and that hasn’t changed in decades. Why? Because 63% of oral cancers are diagnosed in late stages. Treatment of late stage cancers is difficult, often involving surgeries like resection  (removal) of part of the jaw bone and radiation which can lead to loss of taste, dry mouth, tooth decay and loss of teeth.
  • It is also important to note that the number of oral cancers has increased while the prevalence of all other cancers has declined.
  • 40% of new cancers are in young non-smokers, primarily 20-30 year old patients, with the prevalence favoring men 2:1.
  • 40,000 new cases of oral cancer are being diagnosed every year, primarily due to HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) infections.
  • HPV related oral cancers are 6-7 times more common in men than women.

If this isn’t a good reason to be faithful to those dental check-ups I don’t know what is. It’s not just about cavities anymore! You may have also noticed that we are also using a new laser-based cancer detecting technology called Oral-ID in the office. Make sure you ask for it at your next visit.

And be sure to visit me for a FREE Oral Cancer Exam:
Wednesday May 21, 2014
Warrington Shop-Rite
11 am – 1 pm

I will be providing these free exams on behalf of the Doylestown Hospital Community Outreach Program.

Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or suggestions you may have or contact Dr. Laurence Stone in Doylestown, PA today to schedule your next appointment and we can talk more about this. See you soon!