Making the decision to quit smokeless tobacco

Only you can decide you want to quit using tobacco. Others may want you to quit, but the real commitment must come from you.

Think about why you want to quit.

  • Are you worried that you could get a tobacco-related disease?
  • Do you really believe that the benefits of quitting outweigh the benefits of continuing to use tobacco?
  • Do you know someone who has had health problems because of tobacco use?
  • Are you ready to make a serious try at quitting?

List your reasons for quitting

Tobacco users have many reasons for wanting to quit. But what motivates you to quit may not be the same as what motivates others. Think about making a list of the reasons you want to quit – one you can review later if you’re feeling tempted. The list might include some or all of the following, but be sure to add your own reasons:

  • I want to be healthier.
  • I already have problems with my gums/teeth, and I don’t want them to get worse.
  • I don’t want to spend my money on this.
  • I can’t chew/dip at work/school.
  • I want to be able to go to a movie/mall/ballgame without worrying about it.
  • I want to prove I can do it.
  • I don’t want it to control me.
  • The people I care about don’t like it, and want me to quit.
  • I want to set a good example for the kids.

If you’re thinking about quitting, setting a date and deciding on a plan will help move you to the next step.

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team
Our team is made up of doctors and master’s-prepared nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.

Last Medical Review: February 20, 2014 Last Revised: June 23, 2016

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