Cigarettes & Your Teeth

The majority of people are now aware that smoking is harmful to their health. Smoking is known to cause deadly diseases along with other health issues. However, many people are unaware of the harm that smoking does to their teeth, gums, and lips.

People who smoke are more likely to suffer gum disease, tooth loss, complications after tooth removal and oral surgery, and mouth cancer. They are more prone to infections and heal slower than nonsmokers.

People who smoke should see their dentist regularly to keep their teeth and gums healthy and to look for signs of oral cancer. This is also true for people who vape. Some people believe that vaping is less damaging than smoking, but in most cases, that simply isn’t true.

Tobacco use can cause tooth discoloration, gum disease, tooth loss, and, in severe cases, mouth cancer.

Quitting smoking lessens the risk of oral cancer and gum disease and enhances the person’s reaction to gum treatment. Let’s take a look at other ways smoking affects your oral health.

Smoking Can Cause Teeth To Discolor

One of the side effects of smoking is the tar and nicotine in tobacco. Because of these substances, heavy smokers have seen their teeth turn brown.  However, most see how quickly they can turn your teeth yellow.  This is the least of your worries when it comes to tobacco and your oral health. Here are some other issues that are common among smokers:

  • Gum disease
  • Terrible breath and bad taste in the mouth (called halitosis).
  • Poor taste
  • Poor recovery following oral and gum surgery.
  • Tooth decay.
  • Slow and poor recovery after tooth extraction (known as dry socket).
  • Smokers’ keratosis, whitening of the soft tissue in the mouth.
  • Cancer of the mouth.

Gum Disease and Smoking

Smokers are more prone to bacterial plaque, leading to gum disease. Because smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in the bloodstream, the infected gums do not recover as well as non-smokers. Smoking also generates more dental plaque which accelerates the progression of gum disease compared to nonsmokers.

Gum disease may be more challenging to detect in smokers. This is because tobacco causes insufficient blood supply to the gums, bleeding gums, which is normally an indicator of gum disease, may not be present. Smokers also do not respond as well to gum therapy (professional dental cleaning) as non-smokers.

The good news is that people who stop smoking see improvement in their overall oral health. In fact, with enough time, their gums will start to respond as if they were non-smokers.  Don’t be startled if your gums bleed more after you quit smoking. This is very common because the blood flow starts to return. Seek the advice of your local-based dentist in Bendigo for help.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your oral health, feel free to reach out. We are here to help you understand how smoking affects your teeth and gums and help you keep yourself as healthy as possible. Call today, and let’s start setting you up for regular teeth cleanings. 

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