According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cigarette smoking remains prevalent among nearly 40 million US adults. Around 4.7 million middle and high school students have also admitted to using e-cigarettes and other tobacco products, with 1,600 American youths below 18 smoking their first cigarette every day.
The lethal effects of smoking are no joke. There are around 480, 000 annual deaths caused by smoking, with 41, 000 of those deaths being caused by exposure to secondhand smoke. Disease is also incredibly common among smokers and nonsmokers as 16 million people have to live with a disease caused by cigarette smoking. In fact, for every American who dies because of smoking, at least 30 have to live with a serious smoking-related sickness.
The most prominent illnesses among smokers include oral cancer, periodontal disease, loss of teeth, and even congenital defects according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Around 41% of oral/pharyngeal cancer cases in men, as well as 11% of cases in women, were found to have been caused by tobacco use in a 2003 study. Over 40% of smokers aged 20-64 years old were found to suffer from untreated tooth decay by the CDC. Later studies have also proven the strong correlation between smoking and eventual tooth loss.
It's safe to say that cigarette smoking comes with severe consequences. Every time you smoke a (both traditional and electronic) cigarette, you end up causing more and more damage to your physical health. The only way to prevent serious illnesses like gum disease and tooth loss from ruining your life is to simply quit smoking altogether. It might seem like a difficult road to take at first, but consulting your dentist and properly understanding the effects of smoking on your dental health can serve as easy first steps to a longer, livelier, and healthier future.
How Smoking Causes Gum Disease
Smokers are more likely to develop periodontitis (gum disease) than nonsmokers. When left untreated, periodontitis can lead to the weakening of supporting tissues and eventual loss of teeth. If you smoke while recovering from dental surgery and therapy, you’re also less likely to enjoy successful results.
Recovery from gum disease isn’t very possible when you’re a smoker. Since smoking weakens your immune system, your body doesn’t stand much of a chance at fighting off serious infections. Without the strong ability to recover from and ward off gum disease, smokers are at a very high risk of developing conditions such as respiratory disease and rheumatoid arthritis later on in life.
A weakened immune system due to smoking also increases your body’s vulnerability to harmful bacteria and germs. When some of these bacteria stick to your teeth and gum line, they can form into stubborn plaque that irritates the gums and forms pockets where more bacteria can gather. The presence of severe plaque can eventually lead to tooth decay, discoloration, and even dental abscess.
Smoking And Dry Mouth
A 2010 study found that long-term smokers had a high risk of suffering from decreased salivary flow than nonsmokers. People who aren’t able to produce enough saliva can become susceptible to problems such as tooth decay and halitosis since saliva serves as additional protection against harmful germs and bacteria.
When saliva makes contact with cigarette smoke, it can undergo structural and functional changes due to exposure to certain toxic compositions. In other words, your saliva can gradually morph into an unhealthy state the more you smoke. Highly acidic and unhealthy saliva has been known to erode protective enamel and increase your risk of developing painful cavities.
Cigarette smoking can also lead to the production of odor-causing compounds in your mouth. When certain germs or bacteria make contact with smoke, they can cause rather embarrassing halitosis. Even if you try to gurgle with gallons of mouthwash or bite on a lot of candy, you can still suffer from foul breath when you continue to smoke.
Oral Hygiene For Smokers
It’s impossible to quit smoking in a day. However, you can take small steps to improve the state of your oral health while you learn to quit smoking. Setting up a proper oral hygiene routine will do wonders for your teeth and gums, and it can even lower your chances of enduring painful dental treatments in the future.
First and foremost, it’s always important to brush and floss every day. Don’t try to skip out even once, as missing out on at least two minutes of proper brushing and flossing can lead to the growth of harmful germs and bacteria in all corners of your teeth and gums. It’s also important to follow proper practices when using your floss and toothbrush, such as replacing them every two months and only using gentle products.
If you’re concerned about discoloration due to smoking, you can also use professional and home whitening treatments to make your teeth look a lot better than before. Your dentist will be able to polish off all kinds of spots and stains in no time. You can also use gentle whitening toothpastes and whitening strips to give your teeth a whiter, cleaner look without too much cost or hassle.
Visiting your dentist is another key component of proper dental health. Regular cleanings and check-ups will keep your teeth free of any nasty plaque, calculus, or painful gum disease. Your dentist will also be able to inspect for signs of further health complications, such as lesions and swelling in the mouth.
A dental scaler can also keep your teeth and gums in great shape. You can use a high-quality dental scaler after brushing and flossing to get rid of stubborn plaque and bacteria from between teeth and along the gum line. If you already suffer from sticky plaque or dental calculus, you can also use your dental scaler to thoroughly scrape such nasties right off your teeth.
Our dental scaler is designed to be durable and painless for all your needs. The narrow vibrating head can fit into places where your toothbrush simply can’t reach, and it can also be adjusted with the push of a button for all your needs. You can set the dental scaler to a gentle setting if you’re still getting the hang of things or set it to maximum power in order to get rid of stubborn dirt, germs, plaque, and bacteria. Instead of choosing between dozens of needlessly complicated products in the mall, why not order your own top-quality dental scaler off our online store right now?