The use of tobacco products is the leading preventable cause of disease and early death in the United States.
Smoking has been linked to a myriad of dental health problems. The most well-known are bad breath and tooth discoloration. On a more serious note, smoking can be linked to a higher risk of gum disease, loss of bone mass in the jaw, and oral cancer.
And yet, approximately 42 million Americans still smoke cigarettes!
Every year, the American Cancer Society’s celebrates the Annual Great American Smokeout – one day each year that is set aside to encourage people to make the pledge to quit smoking. Easton Dental strongly encourages people to quit smoking and thus promote better dental health. Why?
A person that smokes has twice the risk for gum disease as a non-smoker. The American Academy of Periodontology makes the assertion that the use of tobacco is one of the greatest risk factors in both the origin and progression of gum disease.
Not only does smoking increase likelihood of gum disease, but has also been discovered to make the treatment of gum disease not as effective.
A list of serious health conditions due to tobacco use includes heart attack, stroke, diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis, Alzheimer’s, and cancer. Gum disease has been found to also be a leading cause of tooth loss, along with being linked to complications during pregnancy. At least 75% of cancers of the mouth, lips, tongue and throat are found in people that use an excessive amount of tobacco.
But all is not lost. It has been found that the effects of smoking begin to reverse themselves almost immediately once a smoker quits this harmful habit. According to the American Dental Association, even after many years of heavy tobacco use, reducing the amount a person smokes or quitting all together is very beneficial. This action can greatly reduce the health risks, even so far as reducing the likelihood of gum disease to the point as if that person had never smoked!
A life without the cigarettes can lead to: Better breath, whiter teeth, healthier gums, and overall better health. Who would not want that?