Smoking and Oral HealthGreg Warham
We only have mass marketing to blame for causing the smoking epidemic, and it continues to cause problems for us to this day. Smoking has been a known cause of lung cancer and other diseases for over half a century now. Yet, many of us are still buying into the industry due to its primary addictive ingredient: nicotine.
It is estimated that that 1.5 million people die from lung-related deaths a year when smoking; a figure suggested to rise after 2020. As well as lung and physical-related ailments, smoking can have a wide variety of other effects. I aim to share the key facts with you on how smoking can negatively impact your oral health.
The Effects on our Teeth
The most striking thing about a smoker’s teeth compared to a non-smoker’s teeth is the colour. Teeth turn yellow, and even shades of brown, when they are regularly coming into contact with the tar and nicotine of a cigarette. Often accompanied with stained teeth, tar and nicotine can cause smokers to have bad breath too. This staining and odorous effect is very unpleasant and can cause many self-esteem issues when smoking.
The Effects on our Gums
The negative effects can also lead to issues with your gums. This is because smoking a cigarette restricts the blood circulation around the mouth and gums, which won’t allow your gums to heal correctly if they become infected. Therefore, it’s likely gum disease will spread faster for a smoker than it does for a non-smoker. This can lead to some pretty nasty conditions with one of the worst being tooth loss.
Risk to life
If some of the previous issues I’ve covered haven’t scared you enough, it would sensible to assume that smoking a cigarette is a massive risk to your life. In fact, an estimated 90% of people with cancer to the mouth are said to smoke or have smoked in the past. This is a dangerously high figure considering roughly 1 billion people smoke globally.
Unsure about your dental health? Call your nearest Synergy Dental Clinic and we’ll be happy to help.