Smoking is not just bad for your oral health, but for the body as a whole. Countless amount of money has been spent on campaigns to encourage more and more people to either steer clear of the habit, or quit the habit altogether. This is especially true for our youth. TobaccoFreeCA is the one campaign that comes to mind here in California.
Let’s face it; we all do things that are bad or harmful to our body. Unfortunately, some things are worse than others. If we had to place it in a top 3– we’d have to place smoking in as one of the top 3 worst habits to pick up.
However, the real issue isn’t that people are unaware of the dangers of smoking tobacco. It’s the fact that it is highly addictive and for many smokers the assumed risks of continuing the habit outweigh the pain of kicking it in a smoker’s mind. That’s why if you’ve never smoked, we strongly urge you to stay away in order to avoid falling into the same mental trap.
Analyzing the Effect of Smoke on Oral Health
When the physical act of smoking occurs, smoke is generated in our mouth before it is inhaled into our lungs where the nicotine’s addictive effects take over. We’re going to tell you what role the smoke plays on your oral health.
Keep in mind that we’re referring the tobacco smoke, but any type of smoke (i.e. hookah, illegal drugs, etc.) will produce the same results.
Smoke Causes Dryness
Any type of smoke carries the aspect of drying out anything it touches. Our mouth creates saliva during the day in order to manage the bacteria present. The less saliva, the more tendencies for problems such as decay to arise.
When we smoke, we dry this saliva up and cause our bodies to work harder to replace what is lost. Do you see the problem here? This is the starting point of all oral health problems caused by smoking. Smokers often have these symptoms as a result of a mouth that is not as nourished with saliva as it should be:
- Stained, discolored teeth
- Tooth decay
- Tooth loss if decay is left untreated
- Inflammation of the gums
- Sensitive teeth
- Oral cancer
Staying educated on the effects of smoking and constantly exposing yourself to it’s bad effects will move you a step closer to mustering up the courage to kick the habit. It’s tough – probably one of the toughest challenges for most. But many have already done it and continue to do it. Are you next?