Smoking Gum Disease Tooth Loss

Smoking, Gum Disease and Tooth Loss

Tobacco contains a variety of toxins and chemicals that are damaging to our overall well-being. They can impair the body’s immune system and hamper it from fighting off infections and diseases. Gum disease is just one of the health problems that smoking can cause or aggravate and it has been reported that smokers are around five times more likely to suffer from the condition than nonsmokers.

Smoking can cause the blood vessels that supply the gums to narrow and this, in turn, will diminish the supply of vital nutrients and oxygen to the tissue. If this condition persists for any length of time, then the bone that holds the teeth firmly in place will gradually deteriorate leading to loose teeth and ultimately, smoking and toothloss.

As a former smoker of some twenty years myself I have experienced this first hand. On one particular visit to the dentist, my gums had begun to recede, and I was told that if they were in the same condition and I didn’t smoke then, my gums would be bleeding constantly. I also received a frank and lengthy lecture on the risks of mouth and throat cancer into the bargain.

The most widely recognized dental issue confronting tobacco clients in the first place are minor things, for example, terrible breath and teeth staining. However, these gentle issues can transform into more significant issues rapidly. As per an examination is done by the American Dental Association, 32% of smokers needed to have a filling replaced, 10.1% needed a tooth extraction and 22.5% needed a major dental cleaning because of periodontal disease (impaired blood flow). Smoking can also be a factor in the loss of jaw bone, gum sickness prompting tooth misfortune, and expanded plaque and tartar develop. According to WebMD, 90% of patients with oral cancer use tobacco products and of that 90 %, 37% who keep using tobacco products after having one cancerous lesion removed will develop another compared to 6% of those who quit smoking.

Quitting is the ideal way to combat these conditions. Another study was done by the American Dental Association, 97.5% of patients who were quite using tobacco, showed an almost complete reduction of mouth lesions (leukoplakia potentially cancerous mouth lesions) in just six weeks of quitting.

There are many ways available to quit smoking. Some patients choose to try prescription treatments such as Zyban or Wellbutrin which can help curb cravings. Others try over the counter treatments such as the nicotine patch or gum. Other nontraditional treatments include hypnosis, acupuncture, and herbal remedies. Those who are interesting in quitting should speak with their dentist of the physician to develop a plan and find out what works best for the patient. Since each person is different, each plan will be different. A few people utilize a blend of medications to stop. It is critical to recall stopping is never simple, yet the wellbeing dangers are recently too high not to stop now.

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This is just one of the many reasons to make that all-important decision quit smoking or at least give it a try. It’s not a nice experience to have your once winning smile turn into something quite the opposite. Who wants those receding gums that produce long and crooked teeth? Not only are they unattractive to look at but they can damage a person’s self-confidence.