Smoking’s harmful effects on the human body have been well-documented and reported, and include potentially fatal illnesses like oral cancer, lung cancer, and respiratory diseases. Nevertheless, smoking and smokeless tobacco use remain common habits, and over 20% of adults in America admit to smoking cigarettes. According to numerous studies, smokers are also approximately four times more likely to exhibit poor oral health than their non-smoking counterparts. Your Allen periodontist, Dr. Marco Cueva, takes a look at smoking and its dangerous effects on smokers’ oral health.
Tobacco Smoke & Gum Disease
One of tobacco smoke’s most significant dangers is its penchant for inhibiting the flow of oxygen and obstructing necessary cell function. Where dental health is concerned, the thousands of harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke can damage gum tissue cells, causing gums to separate from teeth (gum recession) and leaving patients more susceptible to infections like gum disease. By impairing blood flow, cigarette smoke also affects oral tissue’s ability to heal, exacerbating the destruction of gum disease and other dental infections.
Other Dental Problems Linked to Smoking
The ingredients in tobacco contain about 600 different additives that have been approved by the U.S. government. When burned, however, the smoke from tobacco contains over 4,000 different chemicals, 69 of which are known carcinogens (substances that cause cancer). Aside from an increased risk of gum disease, tobacco smoke poses a frightening number of systemic and oral health risks, including;
- Oral cancer
- Lung cancer
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Inflamed salivary glands and reduced saliva production
- Loss of bone mass in the jaw
- Delayed healing following extensive dental treatment
- Increased risk of tooth loss due to trauma or severe dental disease
- Increased risk of dental implant failure following tooth loss
Seek the Expertise of Your Allen Periodontist Today
To learn more about the dangers of smoking to your oral health, schedule an appointment with Dr. Cueva by calling our Allen periodontist’s office at (972) 390-9944 today. Located in the 75013 area, we proudly welcome patients from Allen, Plano, Richardson, McKinney, Frisco, Fairview, Murphy, Wylie, Lewisville, Carrolton, and surrounding communities.