World No Tobacco Day is the 31st of this month and its aim is to bring awareness of the dangers of tobacco.
Almost everyone is aware of the adverse effects, including cancer that tobacco can have on the lungs.
But not all of us know that tobacco use, both smoking and non-smoking, also represents a threat to your gums, jaw, and particularly to the soft and hard tissues of your mouth.
These risks include gum disease, oral cancer, diminished healing after surgery, receding gums, and tooth decay that can lead to cavities.
Cigarettes contain nearly 5,000 chemicals, of which 69 are known to cause cancer. When you smoke, cigarette smoke lingers in your mouth.
This directly affects oral health by reducing blood flow to your gums, reducing vitamin C levels necessary to keep gums healthy, and increasing mouth temperature, which leads to cell damage.
Smokeless, or chewing, tobacco might even be worse. Chewing tobacco keeps harmful substances and chemicals in your mouth longer, where they come into contact with teeth and gums.
This causes gum disease, faster tooth decay, and oral cancer. Users of smokeless tobacco can be 50 times more likely to develop oral cancer.
At Warner Lakes Dental, we support your oral and overall health, so we recommend that all our patients cease intake of tobacco products.
Let’s take a look at some of the dental problems tobacco use can cause.
Effects of Tobacco Smoking on your Oral Health
Tobacco smoking is Australia’s most preventable cause of illness and mortality. Smoking harms your health, and your mouth is particularly vulnerable.
Quitting smoking, on the other hand, immediately reduces the risk of oral cancer and other diseases caused by tobacco, such as:
Stained teeth – Smoking stains teeth, white fillings, and dentures.
Smoker’s breath – Tobacco is one of the leading causes of bad breath as its smoke smells terrible, and the chemicals in it increase the risk of calculus (tartar) build-up, which can lead to bad breath.
Decreased taste – Smoking leaves a paste of byproducts that stick to the surfaces in your mouth, impeding the work of taste buds.
Also, your sense of smell may be decreased. Luckily, these effects begin to fade only 48 hours after your last cigarette.
Gum disease – Smokers can be six times more likely to develop gum disease than non-smokers.
Healthy gums are firm and pink, as their circulation carries nutrients and oxygen to the gums while removing waste.
Smoking affects the blood and oxygen supply of the entire body, including the gums. Smoker’s gums often seem thickened and off-colour, ranging from very pale to purple.
Oral cancer – Most of us know that smoking can cause lung cancer, but it is also the leading cause of oral cancer, accounting for 3% of all cancers in Australia.
The risk of cancer increases with the number of cigarettes smoked and how long smoking has taken place.
Diagnosed in a timely way, oral cancers are more likely to be successfully treated. One of the most effective ways to discover oral cancer early is through regular dental check-ups.
Problems after dental treatment – Smoking can cause complications including slowed healing after gum disease treatment, complications after a tooth extraction, and even failure of dental implants.
What To Do?
Stop using tobacco products. Immediately! If you need suggestions as to treatments, they are available online, or you can talk to us at Warner Lakes Dental.
We’ll be happy to make some suggestions.
Get regular check-ups at Warner Lakes Dental! Regular check-ups pay off far beyond mere plaque control and catching cavities while they are still minor.
We can spot signs of many diseases, including oral cancer. If you are on a recommended bi-annual schedule, you likely visit Warner Lakes Dental more than you do your regular doctor.
These visits can often catch oral cancer early, improving the chance of successful treatment. The importance of an annual oral cancer screening cannot be over-stated.
Did have “quit smoking” on your list of New Year’s resolutions, but never got started or fell off the wagon? Don’t give up, that’s normal.
A 2016 study discovered that people could try 30 times or more before they quit. The message from Warner Lakes Dental is, “Don’t give up!”
World No Tobacco Day is the ideal opportunity to make your first attempt at quitting or try again. Why not resolve that May 31 is your quit tobacco day?
The Warner Lakes Dental Care Experience
Warner Lakes Dental makes your visit the quickest and most convenient dental experience possible.
From our parking lot to booking your next appointment on the way out, we make the entire process as painless and directs as possible.
We want you and your loved ones to enjoy life with a stunning smile and a healthy mouth, teeth, and gums!
Teeth Whitening Promotions
For Whiter, Brighter Teeth, ZOOM WHITENING!
- In Chair Treatment for $399 (normally valued at $899)
- Package In Chair Treatment + Take Home Whitening only for $599 (normally valued at $1200)
We are located at Warner Lakes Medical Precinct, 1185B Old North Road in Warner.