SMOKING AND ORAL HEALTH
You know – Smoking is not good for you! While generations grew up smoking, some beginning as youngsters, it wasn’t until 1964 that the Surgeon General published their official report on the dangers of smoking. Over the past 50 plus years, increasing scientific evidence has been presented to the public on the consequences of both inhaled and chewing tobacco use.
These studies have shown the direct link between tobacco and a significant number of disease processes besides the more known ones such as lung cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. For example, did you know that besides causing ‘smokers breath’ and stained teeth, smoking is detrimental to your oral health?
Smoking and chewing tobacco are shown to have direct links to:
- Oral Cancer – of the mouth, throat, tongue and lips
- Loss of bone structure in the oral cavity
- An inability for bone to heal, which can impact the success rate of dental implant placement
- Slowed healing after periodontal treatment or tooth removal
- Periodontal disease – smoking is linked to the bone’s ability to attach to the gum tissue creating an increased risk of infection with eventual loss of a tooth/teeth
- Greater propensity for the development of plaque and calculus
- A decrease in the ability to taste foods
So, with all compelling reasons to avoid the use of nicotine products, why does anyone continue to smoke? Nicotine is an addictive drug. And, like all addictions, breaking the habit is quite challenging. But, smoking cessation programs, and there are many, have been proven to greatly reduce risks even if you have smoked for some time. The right program can help save your life! Talk to your internist or Drs. Hochberg and Diora to learn more about the oral health connections. We want you to stay healthy and SMILE!
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