We are all aware that smoking is bad for our health, causing a vast variety of medical conditions. The estimation is that 96,000 people die from smoking related diseases and half of all regular smokers will eventually be killed by their addiction. Many of us do not realise the damage that smoking causes to our mouths:
1) Gum Disease and Tooth Loss
Smoking severely affects the tissue in the gums which makes them vulnerable to infection. This can lead to bone loss in the jaw which holds the teeth in place. Bone loss can eventually lead to tooth loss.
2) Bacterial Growth
Smoking results in increased build up of bacteria or plaque which can lead to decay and cavities. Plaque can also affect tissues supporting the roots of the teeth and weaken the bone.
3) Mouth Cancer
There are thousands of chemicals in every cigarette which can cause cancer in the mouth. Smoking transforms saliva into a deadly cocktail that damages cells in the mouth and can turn them cancerous. Smoking causes roughly 2 in every 3 mouth cancers.
4) Yellow Teeth
The tar and nicotine in tobacco can make your teeth yellow in a short space of time. Heavy smokers complain their teeth are almost brown!
5) Smokers Breath
“Smokers Breath” is one of the first problems you develop when smoking. Cigarettes leave smoke particles lingering in the mouth, throat and lungs.
6) Spotty Mouth
Smoking can cause white or grey patches on the tongue, cheek or floor of the mouth known as leukoplakia. This happens due to the irritation of the soft tissues inside the mouth due to smoking. If you are a smoker you should cut down on sugary food and drink, brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and visit the dentist regularly, as often as they recommend.
If you notice any changes inside your mouth speak to your dentist straight away. They will be able to provide you with smoking cessation advice. For further advice please feel free to call us on 01600 712020 or email firstname.lastname@example.org