Smoking and tobacco use, in general, have disastrous impacts on your oral health. This can range from anything from tooth staining or oral cancer. Each time you smoke, you’re causing more damage to your oral health. Learn more about the impacts cigarettes and cigars can have on your oral health.
Tooth Discoloration and Buildup
There are multiple staining agents at work in cigarettes. Nicotine and tar get in through the pores in your enamel. Tar causes brown staining while nicotine reacts with oxygen to cause yellowish stains. The more you smoke, the more these stains build up over the surface of your teeth.
Smoking also increases the buildup of plaque and tartar on your test. Plaque is a film on your teeth. Layers of hardened plaque turn into tartar. These build up at the gum line and cause irritation and inflammation. The early stages of gum disease are caused by this buildup and inflammation.
Gum disease plagues a high majority of adults. The earliest stages aren’t normally noticeable to the typical person. Most likely, you’ll notice bleeding gums as the first sign. Plaque and tartar buildup cause gum disease. If you smoke, you’re more likely to have this buildup and then suffer from gum disease.
Periodontal disease has serious consequences if it’s left untreated. Eating becomes painful and your teeth loosen in the sockets. The infection gets into your jawbone, starting to deteriorate it. Inflammation spreads throughout the bloodstream and impacts your health throughout your body. In severe cases, you can lose your teeth.
The chemicals in tobacco and cigarettes impact the immune system. It delays the healing process. Longer recovery times are common and you may not be eligible for certain medical procedures. If you need a tooth extraction or oral surgery, smoking makes it more difficult for your body to administer healing nutrients after the procedure.
Smoking may also make you ineligible for dental implant treatment. Dental implants are the most natural and recommended form of tooth replacement. But you have to have an optimal amount of healthy bone structure for the implant. You also have to have a certain level of oral health and need to be able to heal properly after the surgery. Even if you can get the surgery, you have a lower rate of success with implants.
Tobacco use puts you at a significantly higher risk of developing oral cancers. You’re at ten times higher risk for oral cancer when you’re a smoker. There are more than 60 cancer-causing chemicals and materials in cigarettes. Oral cancer starts as a lump or spot in the mouth and grows and develops.
If you’re a smoker, it’s even more important for you to see the dentist regularly. At a normal checkup and exam, the dentist will look for signs of oral cancer and gum disease. They’re trained to notice these early signs that may appear to be nothing to you.
Schedule a Checkup With Your Austin, TX Dentist
Are you a smoker or tobacco user? It’s important for you to get a thorough oral checkup. Call us or schedule an appointment online.