Tobacco Use and Oral Health
ELIMINATE TOBACCO TO GET A HEALTHIER SMILE
Happy WNTD (World No Tobacco Day)! A holiday created by WHO (the World Health Organization), World No Tobacco Day helps raise awareness of the dangers of tobacco usage. At DentalWorks - Wake Forest, our staff discourages the use of tobacco in our Wake Forest, NC patients because tobacco is particularly harmful for your oral and overall health. If you or somebody you care about smokes or uses any tobacco products, then take a moment to find out about how tobacco may affect the appearance and health of your smile.
KINDS OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS
From traditional cigars and cigarettes to contemporary e-cigs and hookah bars, there are plenty of methods to consume tobacco. Regardless of the way tobacco is packed, they're all addictive and harmful to your health.
- ELECTRONIC CIGARETTES
Sometimes called vape pens, e-cigarettes, hookah pens, or e-hookah, electronic cigarettes have an increasing popularity, particularly in younger people. The liquid is heated until it turns to an aerosol, which may include many toxins such as heavy metals (nickel, tin, and lead) in addition to other harmful chemicals.
Commonly adding a candy taste (such as cherry, mint, or licorice), waterpipe or hookah smoking is now a social activity in hookah bars around the country. But hookah smoking is equally as dangerous as any other form of tobacco smoking.
- SMOKELESS TOBACCO
More commonly called chewing tobacco, smokeless tobacco can be bought in containers called snuff or dip. Although smokeless tobacco saves those near you from breathing second-hand smoke, a typical serving contains as much nicotine as 3 – 4 cigarettes. Dip typically combines the tobacco with grit and sand, which wears down your teeth.
One of the newest forms of tobacco, dissolvables are attractive to many since they don't create smoke and also, they don't need to be spit out. Dissolvables look similar to lozenges or cough drops and they are available in various flavors to make them more appealing. Dissolvables are particularly dangerous because they look similar to candy and may be poisonous to small children.
Regular cigars, in addition to cigarillos (little cigars), generally have significantly more nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide than cigarettes, but they're viewed by some as a healthier alternative. Cigar clubs may make smoking cigars look masculine or sophisticated, but it's still harmful for your oral and general health.
Made with and without filters, in addition to menthol or light, cigarettes are what the majority of people think of when tobacco is discussed. Available in many Wake Forest, NC grocery stores and gas stations, cigarettes continue to be a favorite option among users.
WHAT ABOUT E-CIGARETTES WITHOUT TOBACCO?
E-cigarettes are a new item, therefore there aren't a lot of definitive studies on related long-term health issues. But even without tobacco, e-cigarette consumers are inhaling harmful chemicals. New research also suggests that young people who vape without tobacco are far more likely to begin smoking cigarettes when they're older. To be safe, it is advisable to avoid e-cigarettes.
EFFECTS OF TOBACCO ON ORAL HEALTH
A leading cause of preventable death and disease, tobacco has no health advantages and plenty of drawbacks. A few of the most significant consequences of using tobacco for your oral health include:
- PROBLEMS AFTER DENTAL SURGERY
Using tobacco impacts your circulatory and immune systems, which is the reason why patients are advised to not use tobacco prior to or following a medical procedure or surgery. Therefore, to be able to repair the harm done to your oral health from tobacco, you'll have to stop using tobacco or risk serious complications.
- CHRONIC HALITOSIS (BAD BREATH)
Your friends, family, and co-workers may be keeping you at a distance since tobacco leaves you with halitosis (chronic bad breath). The odor of tobacco is so powerful that mouthwash, mints, and cleaning your teeth might not be enough to improve your halitosis.
- INCREASED RISK OF PERIODONTAL DISEASE
Smoking and especially chewing tobacco increases your chance of developing gum disease. Periodontitis and gingivitis (the different phases of gum disease) cause loose teeth, bleeding gums, and also a receding gumline.
- INCREASED RISK OF ORAL CANCER
Your risk of getting cancer on your mouth, lips, tonsils, salivary glands, esophagus, and throat is greater if you use tobacco. Based on data from the American Cancer Society, nine out of every ten people with oral cancer used tobacco. The more time you use tobacco, the higher your chance of developing oral cancer.
- YELLOW OR STAINED TEETH
Chewing or smoking tobacco stains your teeth making your smile look yellow and dull. Once you stop, professional whitening can eliminate years of stains and revitalize your teeth.
TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR ABOUT QUITTING
Tobacco is addictive so we know it's hard to stop. If you're interested in quitting, schedule an appointment with your general physician in Wake Forest, NC to find out about cessation aids. Your physician might write you a prescription for a medicine (for example, Chantix or Zyban) or suggest different aids (nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, nasal spray, or inhalers). Some people get help with holistic therapies, such as CBT (cognitive behavior therapy) by a certified therapist, group therapy, hypnotherapy, or acupuncture. A combination of these might be the key to helping you stop so if one does not help you, keep looking. Look into your insurance benefits to see whether they have any discounts or programs on cessation aids. Cutting out tobacco may quickly enhance your health and reduce your risk of several problems, such as oral cancer.
TALK TO YOUR DENTIST ABOUT RESTORING YOUR ORAL HEALTH
After you have stopped using tobacco, then you can begin to restore your dental health. Schedule a dental health examination and cleaning with a dentist in Wake Forest, NC. They'll evaluate the present state of your mouth then develop a personalized treatment program to restore your gums and teeth. This may consist of a deep cleaning (scaling and root planing) to get rid of tobacco residue under your gumline or laser gum surgery in case your gums are receding. If you are searching for a great dental team in Wake Forest, NC who offers general, cosmetic, and restorative treatments, schedule a consultation at DentalWorks - Wake Forest.
* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.