Smoking kills thousands of Americans every year. In fact, it’s the number one cause of several deadly diseases, including lung disease, heart disease, and many types of cancer. That’s why Congress forces manufacturers to place warning labels on all tobacco products.
At Gentle Dental, we’re committed to educating our patients in Gunnison about the dangers of smoking and other forms of tobacco. Most people are aware of how dangerous smoking and other tobacco products are thanks to effective public health campaigns. But did you know that smoking and other tobacco products are particularly damaging to your smile? The harm that they do to your mouth ranges from the inconvenient to the deadly.
The Side Effects of Smoking Can be Deadly
Smoking has some unpleasant side effects, such as giving you bad breath and staining your teeth. Smoking can diminish your sense of taste and smell, making eating less pleasurable. Cigarettes also damage your dental health. For example, if you’re a smoker who’s thinking about getting dental implants, you’ll need to quit. That’s because smoking causes your jawbone to diminish in size and it also hinders a patient’s recovery from oral surgery.
Another downside of smoking is that it’s very expensive, as smoking a pack a day will cause you to fork over thousands of dollars per year. Unfortunately, in the long run smoking can cost you a lot more than money. In addition to being the leading cause of several types of oral cancer, smoking causes gum disease, a serious infection that can wreak havoc on your smile.
How Smoking Causes Gum Disease
Gum disease, also known as periodontal disease, is a bacterial infection that has several negative consequences, including bad breath and swollen, painful, and bleeding gums. If gum disease is allowed to progress all the way to its advanced stages, the patient’s teeth will slide around and eventually they will begin to fall out.
Smoking contributes to gum disease by weakening your immune system. The oxygen in your bloodstream helps your body fight against the plaque and tartar that feed the bacteria which causes gum disease. But smoking reduces the amount of oxygen in the blood that is delivered to your mouth through your bloodstream. That’s why smokers are 64.2 percent more likely to get gum disease.
Cigars and Smokeless Tobacco are Not Safe!
Many people assume that cigars are safe because cigar smokers don’t inhale as deeply as cigarette smokers. This simply isn’t true. Smoking cigars causes gum disease as well as increasing the risk of oral and head cancers.
Smokeless tobacco, which is commonly referred to as “dip” or “chewing tobacco,” is also extremely detrimental to your oral health. It has been shown to cause several types of cancer, including mouth cancer, lip cancer, and tongue cancer. It’s also been linked to gum disease and cavities.
Help for People Who Are Trying to Quit
Smoking is a very addictive drug and it can be difficult to quit without help. Fortunately, the American Lung Association provides resources for people who are trying to stop smoking.
Protecting and Restoring Smiles in Gunnison
At Gentle Dental, we’re committed to helping our patients prevent serious dental issues through education and regular checkups. We also restore smiles with our healthy and beautiful dental implants. Call today to talk to one of our friendly team members and see what we can do for your smile.