We know that it isn’t easy to stop smoking. A recent poll shows that three-fifths of people who resolve to quit smoking start again before a month has passed.
If you’ve decided to quit cigarettes and you need a bit more motivation to keep going, then read this blog post. This month, we’ll be discussing the effect of smoking on your dental health. Specifically, we’ll look at the various oral health problems that smoking can cause: stains, dry mouth, bad breath, gum disease, oral cancer and diminished taste.
Cigarettes can stain your teeth, causing them to become an unsightly yellow or brown colour. While it’s possible to remove these stains if they’re only on the surface, it’s much harder to get rid of stains that have penetrated inside the tooth. Prevention is always better than cure – so stop smoking before the stains build up!
Reduced blood flow to your gums
Smoking not only causes stains; it also reduces the blood flow to your gums. This alone can have several effects on your oral health.
Firstly, reduced blood flow means that your gums won’t be able to fight off infection and plaque as well as they should. This means you’ll have a higher risk of gum disease. Secondly, it means that your gums will heal slower than normal. And thirdly, reduced blood flow means that you might not even notice you have gum disease. This is because reduced blood flow masks one of the most obvious signs of gum disease: bleeding gums.
Smoking causes bad breath, also known as “smoker’s breath”. It’s often particularly bad in the morning.
Oral cancer is another possible effect of smoking. In fact, most cases of oral cancer in the UK are caused by smoking. This is why it’s important to visit the dentist regularly for oral cancer checks if you’re a smoker.
Another problem that smoking can cause is dry mouth. This is a condition where your mouth doesn’t make enough saliva. It can lead to tooth decay and gum disease because your mouth needs saliva to fight off bacteria.
A diminished sense of taste
As if you didn’t need any more reasons to quit cigarettes, you should know that smoking also diminishes your sense of taste and makes food less palatable.
Smoking can have lots of bad effects on your oral health. There’s stains, bad breath, dry mouth, and even an increased risk of oral cancer. These reasons alone should be enough to make you want to quit smoking.
We know it’s not easy to quit smoking. But we think it’s well worth the effort when you keep in mind the positive effects on your dental health. Your teeth will be healthier and you’ll ever have a nicer smile to boot.
If you’d like to speak to a professional about the effect of smoking on your oral health, please make an appointment with a dentist.