Tobacco and Your Oral Health
Smoking and chewing tobacco have negative impacts on many areas of your health, not the least of which is your oral health. While lung cancer and other respiratory complications are some of the more well known and major effects, your teeth and gums can also be heavily affected. Here's what you should know about the effects of tobacco use:
- Mouth cancer: While many people are aware of lung cancer, mouth cancer is another common result of chewing or smoking tobacco, and the results are just as devastating.
- Tooth decay: Tobacco use increases your risk of tooth decay, and with so many other risk factors for tooth decay, it's hardly difficult to have this issue. Tooth decay, if untreated, can turn into larger problems like root canals and even tooth removal.
- Gum disease: This issue is particularly common for people who chew tobacco as this product eats away at the gums. By wearing away at the gums, you are at a higher risk for gum disease as well as tooth decay, which typically require in-depth, more expensive treatments down the road.
- Bad breath: Regular tobacco use can cause bad breath, which most experts attribute to the many chemicals used in tobacco products. This is one of the more well-known oral health complications from tobacco use.
- Tooth discoloration: Another well-known side effect, teeth discoloration is a typical result for smokers and tobacco chewers. This will only worsen over time, and sometimes even professional teeth whitening cannot completely reverse the effects.
These are just some of the oral health issues that tobacco users are at risk for. While your dentist can often provide treatments to help improve the results of smoking or chewing, quitting is always the best option for prevention. Treatments used to help those who have experienced some of these issues include:
Fairfax VA Dentist
If you have any questions or concerns about how tobacco use has affected your oral health, give us a call today to schedule an evaluation. Our experienced dentist will be able to fully review your unique situation to ensure that you get the best treatment possible to help prevent any further issues. We look forward to helping you achieve great oral health today!