Chewing tobacco may be a harmful and unpleasant habit. But its unlikely to be causing your boyfriends cough.
A smokers cough develops when the lungs are persistently irritated by cigarette smoke. In medical lingo, this is called chronic bronchitis. This is a form of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Chewing tobacco, snuff and other forms of smokeless tobacco dont get into the lungs. So they dont appear to cause lung diseases such as emphysema or lung cancer. But smokeless tobacco does have its health risks:
- It releases high levels of nicotine. Nicotine is highly addictive.
- It releases toxic chemicals into the mouth. This increases the risk of developing cancer in the mouth, tongue and throat. When combined with alcohol, the risk is even greater.
My advice: He should stop chewing tobacco immediately. He may need nicotine replacement to help him quit. He can also ask his doctor for prescription medicine to help reduce nicotine craving and withdrawal symptoms.