Through With Chew week events planned

  • By IAN FOLEY
  • Wednesday, February 11, 2015 10:53pm
  • News

Organizations across the country, including those on the Kenai Peninsula, are promoting “Through With Chew Week.”

From Feb. 16-20, smokeless tobacco users can learn about the dangers of chewing tobacco. Free smokeless tobacco quit kits will be available at several locations around the peninsula, including the Peninsula Smokefree Partnership and Peninsula Community Health Services.

On Feb. 19, users of smokeless tobacco are encouraged to stop chewing altogether.

“The whole week is preparing for that day to quit for 24 hours and hopefully for life,” said Jenny Olendorff, project coordinator for Peninsula Smokefree Partnership.

The tobacco quit kits contain information for adult tobacco users on how to receive free nicotine replacement therapy products, such as lozenges and patches.

Unlike nicotine lozenges, patches and gum, which are FDA approved, Olendorff said that Peninsula Smokefree Partnership doesn’t promote use of the e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation tool.

Olendorff said that is important to inform people that using smokeless tobacco isn’t a safe alternative to smoking.

“While it doesn’t cause emphysema and lung cancer, it causes other, equally bad things like oral cancer, esophageal cancer, gum disease and tooth loss,” Olendorff said. “So, it’s a problem. Smokeless tobacco is not a safe alternative to using cigarettes, so we just like to help people quit.”

Smokeless tobacco is harder to detect and notice compared to cigarettes, but it’s still prevalent around Alaskan communities, Olendorff said.

The Gulf Coast region of Alaska, which includes the Kenai Peninsula, has a lower smokeless tobacco usage rate than the state average, according to 2012 data from the Alaska Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

Statewide, 6 percent of adults use smokeless tobacco, compared to 4 percent of Gulf Coast residents.

“We have lower use rates,” Olendorff said. “That being said, the use of smokeless tobacco has increased significantly among current smokers.”

Smokeless tobacco use among smokers has increased from 3.6 percent in 1996 to 7 percent in 2012, according to statistics from the Alaska Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

“It’s a dual use situation, where you are potentially going to chew to get your nicotine where you can’t smoke — where smoking is prohibited or dangerous,” Olendorff said.

Olendorff said she hopes the information and tobacco quit kits provided during “Through With Chew Week” will help encourage people to have healthier lifestyles. Even when the week is over, she said her organization is always available to help people try to quit.

“We try to get anywhere we can get to get people to quit,” Olendorff said. “That is our mission — to really save lives.”

For more information, visit:

Alaskaquitline.com

 

Reach Ian Foley at ian.foley@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

The Alaska State Capitol is seen in Juneau, Alaska, in 2022. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire)
Supreme Court rules against forward funding for education, confirms limit on legislative power

Setting multi-year budgets in Alaska requires cash on hand, justices said

Sarah Palin speaks at a July 11 Save America Rally featuring former President Donald Trump at Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
What to watch: Cheney in trouble; Palin eyes comeback

Sarah Palin jumped on a vacancy in the state’s congressional delegation as a potential springboard back into elected office

Assembly members participate during a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday, June 21, 2022, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Assembly to revisit gravel pit legislation

A proposed ordinance would overhaul borough code addressing material site permits

Campaign signs decorate the outside of Paradisos Restaurant on Monday, Aug. 15, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Election 2022: Where, how, when to vote

Polls open at 7 a.m. Tuesday

As measured by the CDC, dispensing rate reflects the number of prescriptions dispensed per 100 persons per year. While the United States’ dispensing rate peaked at 81.3 in 2012, the Kenai Peninsula’s rate was 100 or higher every year between 2001 and 2015. Graphic by Ashlyn O’Hara.
Borough creates grant program to distribute opioid settlement funds

The Kenai Peninsula Borough will offer hundreds of thousands of dollars in… Continue reading

Alaska Lt. Gov. Kevin Meyer speaks during a press conference announcing the administration’s push for changes to the state’s election system on Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021, in Anchorage, Alaska. (Photo courtesy Kevin Goodman, State of Alaska)
Just 2 Alaska lieutenant governor candidates say 2020 presidential vote was fair

Alaska’s lieutenant governor will oversee the 2024 presidential election

Kenai Peninsula School District Superintendent Clayton Holland stand near the entrance to the district’s Soldotna offices on Thursday, March 17, 2022, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Academics, staff recruitment among district priorities for upcoming school year

The superintendent is ready to see KPBSD return to the district’s pre-COVID-19 academic performance

Raymond Bradbury preserves his salmon while dipnetting in the mouth of the Kenai River on Saturday, July 10, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion file)
Personal use harvest reports due Monday

Northern Kenai fishing report

Evelyn Cooley competes in the barrel race at the Kenai Peninsula Fair on Aug. 12, 2022, in Ninilchik, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Music, magic, daredevils and pigs

Kenai Peninsula Fair brings an assortment of activities to Ninilchik

Most Read