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Article: Volume 43 Number 5 Page 442 - June 2016

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  Dent Update 2016; 43: 442-447

Oral medicine:  Tackling the Use of Supari (Areca Nut) and Smokeless Tobacco Products in the South Asian Community in the United Kingdom

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Abstract: The use of supari (areca nut) and smokeless tobacco products are seen as a major risk factor for oral cancer. There are increasing rates of oral cancer across the United Kingdom, along with the increase of the use of these products. This article examines the uses of such products amongst the South Asian Community and explores sensitive issues associated with the cessation of their use. Evidence-based recommendations are provided on how to provide advice and treatment to patients that regularly use these products. A rethink is also suggested on the policy of taxation of such products.

Clinical relevance: With the rates of oral cancer increasing across the United Kingdom, it is important for us as dental professionals to tackle the use of areca nut and smokeless tobacco products.

Author notes: Milan Chande, BDS, Dental Foundation Trainee, Boutique Dental 23, 23 Bryn Street, Ashton-in-Makerfield, Wigan, WN4 9AX, (milan@chandefamily.co.uk) and Krishna Suba, Fourth Year Dental Student, School of Dentistry, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK.

Objective: To appreciate how the use of areca nut in the South Asian community may cause oral cancer and outline the best cessation advice for patients.