How Smoking And Tobacco Use Can Affect Dental Health

How Smoking And Tobacco Use Can Affect Dental Health

As most smokers and tobacco users know, using these products has a direct negative impact on many aspects of their health. From the risk of developing throat, mouth, or lung cancer, regular use of nicotine products can also have a significant effect on dental health.

Over the years, our dentists here at Bridge Creek Dental have seen firsthand the effects of smoking and tobacco use in the mouths of patients. If you are looking for motivation to quit or have a loved one you want to help quit, here are some facts about how smoking and tobacco use can have far-reaching effects on dental health.

How Dental Health Is Impacted By Nicotine Products

Now, we have mentioned smoking and tobacco specifically, but the nicotine in these products is one of the main culprits behind deteriorating dental health. While the tar and carcinogens in tobacco products can cause a host of other health issues, nicotine—which is present in almost all forms of these products from cigars to most vaping liquids—is what will impact your oral health the most.

That impact is due to the vasoconstriction that nicotine induces. Vasoconstriction means that the blood vessels have been constricted and are narrower. With narrower blood vessels, there is less blood flowing through them.

With less blood flow in your mouth, it is far easier for periodontitis—gum disease—to set in and progress to further stages that can result in tooth loss and jawbone density loss. Also, another side effect of reduced blood flow due to nicotine is that if you have a tooth extracted or an oral sore, it can take far longer to heal as fewer white blood cells make their way to the problem area.

Lastly, using cigarettes, cigars, vaping, and other nicotine products can cause dry mouth. While some people may just consider that a comfort issue, having a dry mouth can lead to greater bacteria build-up and faster tooth decay. This decay can lead to needing fillings for cavities, root canals for deeper infections, and complete tooth loss if not controlled.

Signs That Smoking And Tobacco Are Affecting Your Oral Health

Sometimes, it can take until there is a visible impact on their health to convince a smoker that they should give up their addiction. So, to help you recognize the danger signs that smoking and tobacco are affecting oral health, see the list below.

  • Staining of the tongue, teeth, and discoloration of the gums.
  • Lasting bad breath that doesn’t go away.
  • White patches show up in the mouth—properly called leukoplakia.
  • Greater build-up of tartar and plaque on the teeth.
  • Loose teeth, which can potentially fall out.
  • Slow healing for sore in and around the mouth.

Should you recognize these signs in your dental health, then you likely need quality dental services to help get your oral health back on track.

Visit Our Dentists in Billings, MT For Dental Help

Receiving quality dental care can make a significant difference whether or not you do end up quitting smoking. While it is best if you quit smoking and have your dental health addressed, our dentists can still help with your dental care if you are still smoking.

If you would like our dentists to help with your dental health, please contact us today to set up your appointment as soon as possible. That way, we can get you on the path to a healthier, happier smile!

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