Snus has a long tradition in Scandinavia and is becoming increasingly popular in other countries as well. Snus is used to describe tobacco-containing or tobacco-free pouches that are placed under the upper lip when consumed, thereby releasing nicotine. There is not yet as much evidence on the long-term effects of snus as there is on cigarettes, as the number of snus users is lower than smokers.
We want to take a look at the snus long-term effects and find out what impact snus has on health according to the current state of studies. In addition, we will explain how well snus compares to cigarettes.
Snus long-term effects: What are the possible health effects?
Snus is often proclaimed as a sensible substitute for cigarettes, but what about the long-term damage? Snus contains similar substances as cigarettes, namely mainly tobacco and thus nicotine. The difference lies in the application, because compared to cigarettes, snus is not lit and burned, but the nicotine is absorbed by the body through the mucous membranes. This difference is the main reason why tobacco snus is about 95% and tobacco-free snus about 98% less harmful than cigarettes, because the vast majority of the pollutants of the cigarette is produced during the combustion process.
Effects on oral health
If you take a closer look at the health consequences of snus, you will notice that they are mainly related to the oral cavity. Snus can have a negative impact on dental health and cause gum irritation. In the worst case, consumers can expect periodontitis, especially if oral hygiene is poor. Lesions of the oral mucosa are also possible, which may regress in the long term.
On the other hand, oral, esophageal and pancreatic cancer is often mentioned in connection with snus. Although studies have been conducted on this topic so far, they all came to a different conclusion. A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Public Health could not find any connection between an increased cancer risk and the consumption of snus. However, the long-term cancer rates of the Swedish population, which has consumed snus for centuries and hardly any cigarettes, offer a hint: Sweden has the lowest lung cancer rate worldwide, while oral cancer rates are not higher than those of other industrialized countries.
Reasons for the different results of snus long-term effects
One reason for the contradictory conclusions is the ingredients of snus, which vary from country to country. For example, in North America, the products are enriched with nitrosamines, a substance that is considered carcinogenic.
In Sweden, however, the use of nitrosamines is banned by the food authority and therefore does not appear in any of the products. Thus, the risk of cancer is also significantly lower in snus from the Scandinavian region. By the way, we at Snushus do not import a single product from North America, but only Swedish-style snus.
Snus long-term damage compared to cigarettes
Since there is no combustion process in snus, it is still suitable as a good alternative to smoking. In Sweden, snus consumption is already more widespread than cigarettes and the number of people suffering from lung cancer is lower than in other countries.
This is also proven by the 2019 study published in the Harm Reduction Journal. The study proves that snus consumption is associated with fewer risks than smoking. Thus, the number of lung cancer as well as cardiovascular diseases decreased sharply in Sweden. For Switzerland, these results were reason enough to legalize the sale of snus in 2019.
Snus products without tobacco
Meanwhile, there are even snus products on the market that are completely free of tobacco. These products do contain nicotine, but this is added by means of nicotine salt or in liquid form. They are called All White Snus.
The best known brands include Velo, LYFT and edelsnus. The edelsnus brand also released a product that does not contain tobacco or nicotine. Edel CBD Mint is for this reason perfect for people who want to try completely hazard-free snus.
If you take a closer look at the long-term effects of snus and cigarettes, you will find that snus performs better because the product is not lit when consumed. Long-term effects such as oral cancer have not yet been directly linked to snus. With proper oral hygiene, the recession of the gums can be reduced and the risk of periodontitis reduced.