If you want your boyfriend to stop chewing tobacco, you are probably worried about what it's doing to his health. While you cannot make your boyfriend put a stop to his habit, there are ways to show support and help him when he is ready to quit. Chewing tobacco is a form of smokeless tobacco. The National Cancer Institute reports smokeless tobacco has 28 carcinogens and causes pancreatic, esophageal and oral cancer. As of this publication, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services states that 15 percent of high school boys and 3.5 percent of all adults engage in smokeless tobacco use, according to BeTobaccoFree.gov.
Learn the Facts
Take some time to research the hazards of smokeless tobacco. Arming yourself with knowledge will help you when he is ready to discuss the topic. If he acts as though chewing tobacco isn't a big deal, you can offer an intelligent argument on why it is so dangerous. You can tell him, for instance, that keeping an average-sized dip of chewing tobacco in his mouth for 30 minutes can put as much nicotine in his body as smoking three cigarettes, according to BeTobaccoFree.gov. Also consider helping him calculate how much money he could save by quitting his habit with the savings calculator at UCanQuit2.org. When your boyfriend is ready to quit, refer to him to helpful resources, such as KillTheCan.org or Nicotine Anonymous.
Tell Him How You Feel
Pick a good time to talk to your boyfriend about your concerns. The best opportunity is when he tells you he wishes he could quit chewing tobacco or that he hates spending his money on it. Let him know how much you care about him and that you want him to live a healthy life. Let him know that you will be there for him when he is ready to quit.
The Waiting Game
After doing your part to learn more about smokeless tobacco and sharing your feelings about it, you have to wait until he makes the decision to quit. No matter how much you want him to stop chewing tobacco, you cannot force him to give it up. If you put too much pressure on him, it could backfire and make him less likely to want to quit. The best thing you can do is let him know you understand how difficult it is stop and let him know you will support him when he is ready.
Helping When He Is Ready
If he does make the decision to stop chewing tobacco, there is a lot you can do to help him. Talk about his routine and the times he is likely to have cravings. Find some distractions to get his mind off chewing, such as eating a healthy snack, chewing gum or exercising. Offer a lot of encouragement and praise for his efforts to quit. Let him know he can call you anytime he is struggling and wants to give up.
Quitting Isn't Easy
Don't be frustrated if your boyfriend tries to quit and doesn't succeed. It takes most people more than one attempt to quit, and for some it even takes five to 10 times. If he does relapse, remind him of the positives of being tobacco-free and encourage him to set a date to try to quit again.
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