It is a common knowledge that smoking isn’t good for your health and it is equally harmful to your oral health. Tobacco damages your teeth in many ways such as it limits your mouth’s ability to fight infection and when your mouth becomes defenseless, plaque and bacteria starts developing in your mouth.
Following are the harmful effects of smoking on your oral health.
- Tooth discoloration: The most common and obvious sign of smoking is yellow or stained teeth. The chemicals stick to your tooth enamel causing your teeth to stain over time. You can go for teeth whitening treatment which can help treat the discoloration, but if you smoke regularly, it will be impossible to stop or reverse the problem completely.
- Periodontal disease: According to Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), smokers are twice at risk of having gum disease as compared to non-smokers. The risk of gum disease increases with every cigarette you smoke and periodontal treatment tends to be less responsive. The treatment doesn’t work well because smoking limits the ability of your mouth to fight bacteria, which allows it to grow on your teeth and eventually advance towards your gums. If this is left untreated, your gums may start to pull away from your teeth, which can weaken your bone structure. When this becomes severe, it causes the bone and the tissue that holds the teeth in place to break down, which may lead to tooth loss.
- Bad Breath: Cigarette remnants stay in your mouth for long, even after a cigarette is finished, which leads to bad breath. Due to smoking, there is an overgrowth of bacteria in the smoker’s mouth that leads to terrible breath. No amount of brushing and flossing will help to eradicate the bad breath as it is caused due to gum disease, oral sores, or decay. Prolonged and continuous smoking can also lead to the inflammation of the salivary glands which can be painful and result in salivary gland stones to develop.
- Delayed healing: Smoking not only increases your risk of problems such as tooth extraction and oral surgery but also slows down the process of your body’s ability to recover from these dental procedures. It also lowers the chances of a successful dental implant surgery. The more your mouth stays in the vulnerable condition, the more it is prone to further complications.
- Oral cancer: The most severe smoking related mouth condition is oral cancer. Smoking can lead to oral cancer and its chances are increased when smoking is combined with heavy drinking. The early signs of oral cancer can be a white and red patch in your mouth, which is accompanied by difficulty in chewing, swallowing, numbness of your jaw, and even ear pain. These symptoms can also be due to some other causes, but if you notice these signs for more than two weeks, then you should consider visiting a doctor.
Your dentist can help you by advising and treating your oral health issues and mitigating the problem. Dental health problem is just one of the many issues that smokers suffer from, but if you quit smoking, it will help you in ensuring a healthier lifestyle. If you want to know more about your dental health problems and how to deal with it, contact Expressions Dental™ Clinic in Calgary. Our dental team is here to help you with all your dental doubts. Make an appointment by calling us at +1 (403) 252 7733.