How Smoking Affects Your Dental Health
Despite a steady fall in smoking rates since the 1970s, research indicates that 24% of adults or 12.5 million people still smoke.
Smoking can cause a wide range of illnesses and health problems, some of which can be fatal. Although the majority of people are aware of how smoking can affect their bodies and overall health, many are not aware of how smoking can affect their mouths, which can include:
- blemished teeth
- poor breath (halitosis)
- tooth decay
- gum illness
- loss of scent and taste
- decreased blood flow to the mouth
- increased plaque and tartar accumulation on your teeth
- delayed recovery after oral surgery and tooth extractions
- heightened potential for oral cancer
How frequently should I go to the dentist?
It’s crucial that you follow recommendations from professionals like dentist Docklands and go as often as they suggest.
The dentist will examine your cheeks, tongue, and soft tissues in addition to your teeth. By routinely seeing the dentist, any changes in the mouth can be detected early.
What effects will smoking have on my teeth and gums?
Smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in your blood, which prevents the diseased gums from healing. Gum disease advances more quickly in smokers than in non-smokers. The most frequent reason for tooth loss in adults is gum disease.
My teeth are discoloured, why?
Smoking has several negative effects, one of which being stained teeth. This is brought on by the nicotine and tar in cigarettes. Smoking may quickly turn your teeth yellow, and those who have been smoking for a long time frequently lament the colour of their teeth, which is caused by tobacco staining.
What are the chances of getting mouth cancer?
90% of those who have mouth, tongue, lip, or throat cancer use or have used tobacco. The amount of tobacco smoked considerably raises the chance of developing certain malignancies. Smokers have a six-fold increased risk of developing certain cancers compared to non-smokers.
Contact your dentist or doctor if you see anything worrisome in your mouth, such as an ulcer that is not healing.
What advantages come with quitting smoking?
- Fresher breath will be noticeable.
- Your teeth won’t continue to be stained by smoking in any way.
- Your body and mouth’s health need to start to significantly improve.
- Your taste and smell senses will significantly enhance.
- You ought to start breathing more easily.
- It lowers the possibility of contracting deadly diseases.
- It lessens the risk that secondhand (passive) smoking poses to other people.
- You’ll get to save money.
How do I give up smoking?
Because the nicotine in cigarettes is such an intensely addicting molecule, quitting smoking is difficult. But giving up smoking will be a crucial step in enhancing your oral and general health.
To assist you in quitting smoking, a variety of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) solutions are available, including:
- nicotine-laced gum
- nasal spritzers
There is no proof that one nicotine replacement technique is superior to another.
A mix of nicotine replacement therapy, as opposed to utilising a single product alone, is, nevertheless, clearly more beneficial, according to the available research.
Which actions can you take to stop smoking?
It requires effort, commitment, accountability, and willpower to stop smoking. The Centers for Disease Control provides a plethora of information on quitting, including tricks, plans, and upkeep. In addition, they offer a helpful 5-step method to stop:
- Prepare by setting a date to quit.
- Lean On Your Support System: Ask for assistance from your friends, family, and health care providers.
- Make Distractions: When you feel the want to smoke, focus on something else (exercise, hobby, etc.).
- Medication As Necessary: Discuss the advantages of taking prescription or over-the-counter drugs with your doctor.
- Prepare for setbacks by acknowledging their occurrence, taking responsibility for it, making an effort to move past lapses, and continuing.
Smoking will eventually harm your teeth and oral health; the question is not if it will happen, but rather when. And even though smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the US, quitting is a difficult process. Keep in mind that your dental professionals can assist you with the majority of oral care issues. Your dental team can assist in developing a programme to begin the quitting process and will be a crucial part of the support system you’ll need if you visit them regularly. Yes, routinely brushing and flossing your teeth can improve your smile. You are responsible for the remainder of your dental health. Start by putting down the cigarette and making a healthful decision.
The article is written by Dr Luke Thorley (BDS (Hons) PG Cert Imp), an award-winning clinical director and principal dentist at Royal Wharf Dental.