Bad breath, tooth discoloration, plaque buildup, gum disease, tooth loss and oral cancer are all side effects of smoking. The damages caused by smoking can impact your oral health, just as it does your overall health. Statistics have found that 50% of smoking adults have gum disease and are approximately twice as likely to lose their teeth or need a root canal.
When it comes to tobacco products there isn’t one product that is any safer than another. Both cause damages that extend beyond the mouth. Smoking and smokeless tobacco products both affect the soft tissue and bone attachment. Tobacco use also leaves smokers more susceptible to infections and gum disease.
The chemicals found in these products also increase the risk oral, throat and esophageal cancers. Smokeless tobacco irritates the gums and as a result, the gums begin to separate from the teeth. This separation can increase the risk of tooth decay and increase sensitivity, making eating and drinking difficult.
The American Cancer Society reports that 90% of people with mouth, lip, throat and tongue cancer are tobacco users. Their research also concluded that smokers are six times more likely to develop these cancers. The easiest way of preventing these issues is to stop smoking or reduce your habit. Studies have shown that reducing your intake can lower your risk of developing these conditions all together. Your doctor and dentist can both help you to calm your cravings and stop smoking with a variety of medications.