How does smoking affect your oral hygiene?

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We all know that smoking isn’t the best thing for your health. It causes cancer, restricts oxygen in your blood, and can be fatal. But what about the effects on your oral hygiene? Your mouth is the first thing to come into contact with cigarette chemicals, so surely it must do some pretty serious damage? Through this article, we will explore the effects smoking has on your oral hygiene, and what we can do to prevent further harm being done.

Smoking not only causes aesthetic problems in your mouth such as staining, discolouration and bad breath, but it can also cause a variety of serious health problems too. It can also:

  • Lead to an increased risk of developing gum disease, and potentially tooth loss
  • Reduce bone mass in the jaw
  • Increased build-up of tartar and plaque on the teeth
  • Inflame the salivary gland openings on the roof of your mouth
  • Lower the success rate of dental procedures
  • Increase the risk of developing oral cancer

Smoking can cause gum disease by interfering with the normal function of gum cell tissues. This interference affects the attachment of bones and soft tissue in your teeth, making smokers more at risk of developing infections, and reduced blood flow to their gums-effecting wound healing.

Another effect of consistent smoking is of course the yellowing or staining of teeth. Smoking can make teeth yellow in a very short amount of time, even turning them brown if you are a long term smoker.

Smoking also leads to cancer. Of course, this is common knowledge, but not only does smoking increase your chances of developing lung and throat cancer; it is also the leading case of oral cancer too, killing thousands of people each year.

If you are a smoker, it is very important you have regular and consistent check-ups with your dentist, so they can look for any abnormalities in your mouth. Doing this will help you maintain a good level of oral hygiene, spot any cancerous looking mass’s and help with giving you advice on smoking and the damage it can cause.

You may also be referred to a dental hygienist, who can help clean your mouth and reduce staining on your teeth. It is recommended that heavy smokers visit the hygienist every 3 to 6 months.

There are products out there for smokers who wish to improve their oral hygiene through toothpastes and mouth wash. It is recommended that you use toothpaste designed for smokers with your everyday toothpaste in order to reduce staining and improve the overall appearance of your teeth.

Are you looking to improve your oral hygiene? Would you like to remove stains caused from smoking or just receive advice on the subject? Why not call Ascent Dental Care Malvern today, to see how we can help you.

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