People who smoke have a greater risk of gum-related problems, and smoking has long been known to cause foul-smelling breath. This is largely because of the smoke being inhaled; as well as the nicotine and other harmful chemicals found in cigarettes. Furthermore, there are many other complications, such as gum disease and mouth cancer, that can occur. Here are some detrimental effects that smoking can have on your oral health:
Smoking can lead to gum disease. The disease, also referred to as a periodontal disease, occurs due to an infection which destroys the bone supporting your teeth. Nicotine can cause stains on your teeth, which can accumulate to form tartar and irritate the gums around the tooth, resulting in pain and bleeding of the gums.
Teeth play a significant part in shaping the lower part of the face, and so it is crucial to look after them. When left untreated, the bone that holds the teeth to the jawbone may collapse, and teeth may start falling out of the structure. The loss of teeth causes mastication issues such as difficulty eating and chewing food. Furthermore, it may affect your speech ability and your appearance.
Tobacco in cigarettes is responsible for more than 75% of mouth cancer cases. It is because they carry cancer-causing substances (carcinogens), which can enter the body and damage cells, significantly increasing your risk of developing mouth cancer.
Mouth cancer does not end at just the mouth, as the cells lining the mouth – squamous cells, are also the same ones lining the nose and throat surface areas. Most of the time, cancers come from these surface cells; and without treatment, they can spread rapidly and deeper into the muscles, bones, and bloodstream, which may be challenging to treat.
Mouth ulcers and gum recession
Mouth sores and ulcers are common oral health issues and are more common among smokers. Many studies have found that those who quit smoking faced more mouth ulcers for two weeks. However, after about four weeks, the problem got milder with time, and all their ulcers disappeared within four weeks of quitting.
Gum recession is when the gum tissue pulls away from the teeth, exposing the roots underneath and causing sensitive teeth. People who smoke tobacco products are more likely to experience gum recession, as harmful agents attacking the gums make them prone to diseases.
If you are a smoker, there are some things you can do to prevent teeth and gum problems, such as cleaning your teeth twice a day and drinking plenty of water to stimulate saliva flow in the mouth. It is not too late to reverse the effects of smoking, and if you are planning to quit smoking, you can speak to your dentist or a quitline for support.
Here at The Braces Practice, we have a team of dentists dedicated to helping our patients improve their oral hygiene and health through consultation and various treatments. Please book an appointment today to visit us at our clinics. We also offer affordable braces in Singapore, such as Invisalign clear braces and metal and ceramic braces.