If you smoke, chew tobacco, or vape, you have probably had your fill of people telling you that you should quit, a task that may seem way too difficult. But here’s yet another reason to think about doing so – you may want to think about how tobacco products affect your smile and your oral health.
How Bad Can Using Tobacco Really Be?
A few years after you started smoking or chewing tobacco, you probably started to notice that your teeth looked yellow (or even a brownish color), with stains that wouldn’t go away. This may not bother you so much, but the damage from tobacco goes beyond the surface of your smile. Over time, it can start to seriously affect your teeth and gums. This includes all types of traditional tobacco products, such as cigarettes and chewing tobacco, but vaping can harm your oral health as well. You are more at risk for:
- Gum disease. Tobacco increases the amount of bacterial plaque on the teeth, which can lead to gum disease. However, it also reduces blood flow to the gums, making it difficult for your body to replenish damaged gum tissue. Tobacco can also make it more difficult for the mouth to fight infection.
- Damage to your teeth. Even vaping can damage teeth – vaping products contain propylene glycol, which can damage tooth enamel. Saliva is an important part of keeping teeth clean, but vaping also causes dry mouth, resulting in the erosion of tooth enamel and tooth decay.
- Oral cancer. Tobacco products increase your odds for not just lung but also throat and oral cancer. If you use tobacco in any form, you might be advised to come in more than twice a year for cleanings and checkups. The staff at Hampton Dental Associates will make sure that your teeth and gums are in good health, work at removing stains on your teeth, and check for any signs of cancer.
Tobacco use can increase your risk for dental problems, and if this is a habit of yours you should pay special attention to the health of your teeth. Contact Hampton Dental Associates in Milwaukee at (414) 464-9021 for an appointment today!