If you are a smoker, whether it is regular cigarettes, or even pipes and cigars, you may have an increased chance of developing health issues. Smoking can increase your chances of having a heart attack or stroke, and is also a leading cause of lung cancer. When people think about smoking, most would think first of how your lungs are affected and what it can do. It doesn’t just stop at your lungs or heart, it also greatly affects your oral health.
What Smoking Can Do to You
Smokers smoke for a variety of reasons; to reduce stress, in response to an oral fixation, or just to satisfy the craving to smoke a cigarette. Although this may be used as a temporary stress reliever, there can be long-term damages that may arise. Some long-term impacts that smoking may have on your oral health include:
- Tooth Staining– Smoking causes the outer layer of the tooth (enamel) to become stained. Since it is the enamel that becomes stained, this is referred to as extrinsic staining. Teeth whitening or veneers can help reduce stains or even get rid of them completely.
- Bad Breath– one of the main things that someone will notice about you if you’re a smoker is the scent, especially if it lies on your breath. Smoking can cause bad breath (halitosis), and dry mouth, along with some long-term effects that can be caused by tar and nicotine.
- Tooth Decay– Smoking increases the amount of plaque that builds up within your mouth. The more plaque that coats your teeth, the harder it can be to remove, and its presence can eventually lead to destructive tooth decay.
- Gum Disease– smoking cigarettes or any products containing tobacco can lead to gum disease by affecting the attachment of the bone and the soft tissue to your teeth. Smoking affects the normal functions of the gum tissue cells, making smokers more prone to infections like periodontal disease, and may impair blood flow to the gums, restricting your oral tissues’ ability to heal.
Ways to Prevent Further Oral Damage
Zoom! whitening, the most popular form of teeth whitening, is fast, convenient, and trusted by cosmetic dentists across the United States. It can brighten your teeth up to eight shades, getting rid of any yellow or brown stains that darken your smile, typically in just over an hour (about the time of a typical lunch break). While teeth whitening is effective at erasing most extrinsic teeth stains, further consultation may be necessary if an underlying dental health issue is to blame for your smile’s blemishes.
ABOUT YOUR SOUTHLAKE DENTISTS:
As a native Texan, Gregory Wright, DDS opened his private practice in Southlake, TX in 1992. He and Dr. Victoria Heron are happily accepting new patients from Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, Trophy Club, Colleyville, and all surrounding communities. To learn more, call our office today at (817) 481-7999.