My Son Aspirated Dip

KillTheCan LogoHello, my name is Donna….my son Chance turned 20 only ten days before he passed away on Nov 30, 2011… Six months ago. He still lived at home with me and his stepfather of 18 years and his 15 year old half brother. He had a sister age 23 and a step brother and step sister age 22 and 20. The reason I am posting here, is Chance dipped Grizzly.

I had always fussed at him for this habit. The night of Nov 28, 2011, he fell asleep with Grizzly in his mouth after taking over the counter sleeping meds….along with a Xanax a Dr had given him a prescription for. He aspirated the grizzly into his lungs during the night….toxicology showed the meds was nowhere near fatal…but was enough to make him sleep deeply enough that he didn’t know the spit was running down into his lungs.

When I tried to wake him that morning, I saw the dip run out of his mouth…he was already in what I later learned was Agonal breath….a death breath. He was in a coma… the time the ambulance got him to the hospital he flatlined….they got him back….but he got a fever of 108…and all of his organs failed…

I just wanted to warn people about falling asleep with dip in your mouth….and of course sleeping medicines….even over the counter kind like my son bought at walmart….and Dr prescribed….what killed him was the initial phnemonia from aspirating the dip…and just overnight that’s how quick it can happen. I tried to wake him at 6:30 am….it was too late….I just want people to know, please be careful…don’t fall asleep with dip in your mouth. If I can bring that awareness to just one person…well…Otherwise I don’t know how I can go on.

Thank you
Donna Hines
Below is obit


  1. Im so sorry for your loss, i cant imagine the pain of losing your son so obruptly, i will keep u in my prayers ma’am.. that is crazy to hear though, because whenni was real bad in my addiction to opioids and xanax and heroin, i always fell asleep with chew in my lip, and ironically i chew grizzley, i had my ex wife try to wake me up countless times to spit my chew out, so many times i woke up in the morning with spit drooled all down my mouth and all over me, and my spit bottles were always spilt over in my chair or couch or my bed.. i am 4 years clean this april 11th, and now i know how lucky i am to be alive in many ways.. but occassionaly i still fall asleep with chew in my mouth, but thats due to have a really physically labor demanding job, cuzni get home at night so tired i fall asleep with chew in my mouth.. i need to stop that and even try to stop chewing period.. anyways again im truley sorry for your loss, no parent should out live their child, and its sad to see that. Thank u n god bless

  2. So sad about Chance. God bless you and your family. My husband takes pills and often falls asleep with chew in his mouth. My kids and I are always having to wake him up for fear something terrible will happen to him. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Slept with dip in for years. Started to wake up choking lately and now I’ve been hacking it up for over a week. I quit. Sorry for your loss.

  4. I’m nervous and scared to go to the doctor because I’ve been coughing up flem every morning for a year because I inhaled chew in my sleep a few times, I’m afraid it’s not coming out because of the fiber glass In the chew is stuck down there like slivers.. My body is obviously trying to reject it and creating flem but for a year… I think I’m screwed and prey I don’t get cancer. I’ve tried and tried to quit chewing and even facing I may get cancer I have not quit..

    1. I just quit dip a week ago today I used to fall asleep with dip in my mouth every night. I’ am a former opioid addict and I am1 year clean now and can’t tell you how many times I woke up gagging on chew after nodding off with a dip in. So thankful to be alive after reading this and so sorry to hear about your son. God bless and thank you for sharing. So glad I found this site.

        1. Good morning Donna – wanted to just drop in and say hi and let you know that I think of you and Chance often. I know that nothing can ever replace him but I can tell you that his story has helped people in their journey to quit dipping.

  5. Donna, So sorry to hear of your loss. I dipped for 43 years straight and rarely in the last 20 years did I go to sleep without dip in my lip. I would wake up many times gagging or choking on dip/spit. My wife would beg me to stop sleeping with it, as it was not only bad for me, but ruined our good bedding and she would get so upset. I never considered the aspiration angle, but I do feel it was probably the cause of many a sore throat over the years.
    I am 44 days quit today and I promise, to you and your lost son, I will not use that poison in my body again!

  6. I’m so sorry about your loss and I want to thank you for sharing your story because it may have just saved my husbands life. My husband is 29, and he sleeps with dip in his mouth every night and he takes 6 Benadryl s night to help him fall asleep. I wasn’t worried about it until recently he has been experiencing all kinds of issues with his stomach cramping and throwing up blood, and he is constantly constipated. I tell him he needs to go to the doctor but for some reason he won’t. He just doesn’t seem to believe it is anything serious?

    1. Katie,
      Your response has got goosebumps going down my spine , I didn’t think there was anyone else that existed on the planet that was identical to my husband! Email me with your personal email my email is shaygray57& I have a very shocking story that will make your husband re think Benadryl and sleeping with dip in his mouth. Sadly it envolves my husband that I just lot in December

  7. So sorry to hear this. This is the final straw forever for me. I will NEVER out a dip in my mouth again. I got drunk took a xan and passed out with a dip in my mouth. Luckily it was face down. I was passed out so hard that I could have easily choked and not even been able to wake up. This is very very real and I’m quitting all my bad habits as of 2017.

  8. Though this is heart breaking and terrible news as I passed out on xans with a dip last night. But I dont see how this would make anyone quit just take the Pinch out before bed its really not that serious. Just don’t dip on xans because you will pass out and Xanax in general is the most addictive prescribed drug in the world buy melatonin for fucks sake lol don’t fall for the prescription route and do some research

    1. Well you seem to have it licked. All the answers. I suggest you move on and pump yourself full of nic and Xanax. As for here, us lowly quitters will continue. When u hit the wall, I hope it’s not too late.

        1. Thank you for your post donna …i am very sorry for your loss ….i have also fallen asleep with a dip in and didnt realize how serious it could be i just knew i felt aweful in the morning …im trying to quit now and will definately make sure i will not fall asleep with one in b4 tobacco is no longer a part of my life

    2. I do boy alot and im apways falling asleep with dip in my mouth thanks for warning me i got really sick the other day and couldnt figure out why and im 99 percent sure now it was from falling asleep and swallowing dip/dipspit. Thanks so much ill make sure i take mine out before i fall asleep. Hang in there hes watching over you.

  9. Wow, I am so sorry to hear that. I fall asleep with a dip in multiple times a week. I will definitely spit it out next time I feel drowsy.

    1. My husband fell asleep with dip in his mouth and Ambien in his blood many times. He died of lung cancer in June despite having not smoked in almost 40 years. Dip and sleeping are a fatal combination.

      1. Sorry to hear. Yet it doesn’t surprise me! Dip contains the same carcinogens that promote inflammation and disease. Im just floored how its allowed on the market at all. I was dipping in HS and recently, and thanks to the net i have an understanding. Just take dried Tea Leaves and soak them in Pine Sol/Gasoline/Arsenic and plastics. (Nicotine is the least of my concerns) Now…suck on those leaves for about a 1/2 hour! 5x a day!

    2. Thank you Donna. So very sorry for the loss of your son. So thankful, too, that you’ve honored his memory by spreading awareness. My husband sleeps with snuff in his mouth, drinks, and takes high doses of melatonin. He is former drug addict as well. Aside from wrecking our sheets, it’s clear he’s having difficulty breathing. When I tried to wake him a few nights ago as he was laboring and gurgling, a fountain of spit and snuff poured out of his mouth. He started gagging on it as he woke.

      I don’t know what to do anymore. He knows he needs to stop but he’s not there yet… 🙁

  10. It’s hard to qwit I tried for a week and my body graved it I don’t know how to stop I fall asleep with it in my lip one or twice and iam always tired for no reason

  11. I have dipped for 25 years, starting at the age of 15. I have just rapped up day six dip free. I have fell asleep in with a dip before only to wake up drinking my own spitter juice. Not fun but understand that under the right circumstances it could have been a lot worse for me! Sorry for the loss

  12. Amen….. as I sit here now with grizzly in my lip your story has given me the encouragement to try harder and kick the can. I have slowly been weaning myself off of it. I am down to two dips a day one in the morning and one at night before I go to bed. I was dipping 2 and a half cans a day. Thanks for your story and I am deeply sorry for your loss.


  13. I’m so sorry for your loss! I googled this because tonight as many others I’m on my husband for this very thing. I am hopeful your story will convince him. Thank you for sharing….

  14. i am so sorry for your family’s loss. i am also SO grateful you took the time to save others by sharing this story. i’m sitting in a room with my brother who is on heavy sedatives while going through detox and he fell asleep with skoal in his mouth. i asked him to spit it out, but i knew nothing about it and he tried to convince me it was okay. as a last resort i googled the topic and saw your story as one of the first results and was able to convince him after sharing. you might have saved his life tonight. God bless you.

  15. One thing I never did was sleep with dip in my mouth. I am sorry for your loss. Especially in that way. Dip should be outlawed. God bless ktc!

  16. Wow I never even thought about that happening I slept with a dip in my mouth every night for probably around 15 years I chewed for 17 total I have been dip free for almost 3 weeks thanks to but even last night I slept with one of those in

  17. I’m 17 years old and have been dipping for 5 years. I’ve been trying to quit for the past few weeks because my dentist is getting on me about it. Also, i have never fallen asleep with a dip in but I am going to use this story for motivation to quit. You can’t fight mouth cancer .. There’s no winning this.

  18. That is heartbreaking to hear Donna, wish I had something more to say than ‘sorry’. I have fallen asleep with dip in my mouth before but had no idea this could be the end result. Day 1 dip free starts tomorrow, though I don’t know you, your story will play in my head every time I want to grab a tin. I will post back shortly. Your son did not pass in vain. I hope you have found some peace.

    1. Brian, thank you for your kind words to my sister. I pray that you were able to quit after reading my nephew’s story.
      Chance’s Aunt Katina

  19. wow, i am so very sorry for your loss. like justiin said i’ve fallen asleep with a dip in but never considered aspiration as a possibility. thank-you for sharing this story of your son–it might save someone’s life

  20. My name is Justin, I am 25 years old and have dipped for 7 or 8 years now. I have always had a can of Grizzly Wintergreen on me and I have tried, and failed, numerous times to quit. I just wanted to say that your story has given me more fuel to my fire to kick the habit for good and I never realized the severity of the situation your son was in. I have fallen asleep many times with chew or dip in my mouth, and aside from waking up and realizing i swallowed some and the hassle of cleaning up after myself, it never occurred to me that there was real potential danger there. It really is a wake up call and I thank you for that. I can promise you that it will never happen to me again, and I will kill the can for my health and for the people around me who care about me. Thank you very much.

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