Image of cigarette sitting in an ash tray.Photo by © Collingwood

Tobacco is a plant grown for its leaves. The leaves are dried and crushed before they are put in tobacco products.

Tobacco has a lot of chemicals that can hurt your body. One major chemical is called nicotine.

Nicotine excites the parts of the brain that make you feel good. It quickly gives you a small rush of pleasure and energy. But it soon goes away. This makes you want to use more. Sometimes nicotine can make you nervous and jittery.

People can smoke, chew, or sniff tobacco.

People can smoke tobacco with:

  • cigarettes
  • cigars
  • pipes
  • hookahs (water pipes)

People can chew tobacco with:

  • chewing tobacco
  • snuff
  • dip
  • snus

People can sniff tobacco a product called snuff, which is put in the nose and sniffed.

People can also vape nicotine with e-cigarettes or vaporizers. You can learn more about these products in our E-Cigarette Facts.

Some slang names for cigarettes are:

  • smokes
  • cancer sticks
  • coffin nails

Some slang names for chewing tobacco and snuff are:

  • chew
  • wad
  • dip

NEXT: Signs of Tobacco/Nicotine Use