Chewing Tobacco Kills Baseball Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn

Tony GwynnTony Gwynn,who played his entire career with the San Diego Padres, dies at age 54 from cancer in his cheek from chewing tobacco.

Chewing tobacco is a habit Tony Gwynn shared with many major leaguers. In fact, due to the popularity of chewing tobacco among the major leaguers, it has become the cool thing to do on high school and college level teams. Tony had two surgeries on his cheek where the cancer eventually took his life at the young age of 54. If Tony could speak to all the chewers out there, I’m sure he would say that the satisfaction from chewing tobacco doesn’t come close to the pain and devastation from the treatments for oral cancer.

If you are a chewer of tobacco, I won’t tell you to quit. You have to want to do that for yourself. But, please take these steps to lower your risks of getting oral cancer:

  •  Move the tobacco around so the healthy tissue isn’t broken down to the point of no return.
  •  Do not consume alcohol at the same time you chew tobacco. It raises your risks for oral cancer by 3x.
  •  Get an oral cancer screening at your dental check-up. Be sure your lip and cheek are palpated for abnormal lumps and bumps.
  •  Check your mouth regularly by doing an oral cancer self-exam.
  • Forward this blog to the tobacco chewers in your life that you care about!
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