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Missouri Tobacco Quit Services to Assist Dental Practices

By Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

February 7, 2024

We know that community members’ health can be negatively impacted by tobacco use. Dental healthcare providers can help by asking patients about their tobacco use. A recent study found that half of the participants who smoked tobacco reported having no tobacco cessation conversation with their dental care provider, and women were twice as likely to report no such discussions.1

The need for tobacco cessation becomes most urgent with the outcome revelation that about 70 percent of people want to quit smoking, 55 percent tried to quit smoking and only 7 percent successfully quit. If a healthcare provider advises a patient to quit just one time, it doubles their chance for success. 1.2

By integrating tobacco intervention and Missouri Tobacco Quit Services referrals into dental practice, dental healthcare teams can improve their community’s health and significantly impact the fight against tobacco.

Missouri Tobacco Quit Services are FREE, confidential, and an effective way to help Missourians quit all forms of tobacco, including e-cigarettes and smokeless tobacco. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services has been providing free cessation support to Missourians through Missouri Tobacco Quit Services for 15 years.

Dental health care providers are in a perfect position to make a positive impact in tobacco cessation with their patients, as many of these people who smoke report having had a dental appointment in the last year. The dental health care provider has the patient’s full attention and trust, and the patient is receptive to and needs the health care provider’s guidance.

How does the health care provider approach the patient or start the cessation discussion?

  1. Ask patients about their tobacco use.
  2. Advise patients using tobacco to quit.
  3. Refer patients to Missouri Tobacco Quit Services.

Missouri Tobacco Quit Services staff will reach out to your referred patient within 24 hours. Missouri Tobacco Quit Services coaches are highly trained in cognitive behavioral therapy and experienced in helping patients live tobacco-free.

If you would like to strengthen your organization’s tobacco use screening or cessation referrals, please contact the Missouri Tobacco Prevention and Control program with Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, at motobaccoprogram@health.mo.gov.

Additional resources for Oral Healthcare Providers:

References:

  1. Wiener, R. C., Waters, C., Gaydos, M. S., Bastin, M., Abdulhay, N., & Bhandari, R. (2023). Sex gaps in perception of tobacco conversations between adult patients who now smoke cigarettes and oral health care providers: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2017-March 2020 prepandemic. Journal of the American Dental Association (1939)154(12), 1097–1105. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.adaj.2023.09.004
  2. Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. (n.d.). Resources for HealthCare Providers. https://health.mo.gov/living/wellness/tobacco/smokingandtobacco/provider-resources.php

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