Smoking and chewing tobacco can certainly cause serious health problems, particularly for the lungs, but they can also cause extensive, alarming damage to your teeth and gums. You may find that it is tough to break habits, but our oral surgeon in Orland Park agrees that breaking this habit will prove to be beneficial in more ways than one.
Using tobacco products can lead to gum disease by affecting your teeth’s attachment to bone and soft tissue. In particular, smoking may impair the normal function of gum tissue cells. The interference makes smokers more susceptible to infections, including periodontal disease; it also seems to impair blood flow to the gums, making wound healing more difficult as well. Smokers are likely to experience bone loss, which may eventually require oral surgery to correct.
According to a recent study conducted by the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD), chewing tobacco users are 50 times more likely to develop malignant diseases in their gums and cheeks. In addition to causing gum problems, chewing tobacco also causes roots to become exposed, resulting in sensitivity. This provides the perfect environment for bacteria to grow, resulting in tooth decay. The use of chewing tobacco may also impair one’s sense of taste and smell, lead to bad breath and mouth sores, and may lead to gum disease.
One pack of cigarettes a day can result in the loss of two teeth every decade, according to a study by the Academy of General Dentistry. Tobacco products, including cigarettes and cigars, adversely affect oral health. In addition to causing oral health problems, smoking can also cause cancer in the throat, esophagus, and stomach. Nicotine and tar from cigarettes can also enter your teeth through cracks and become embedded there. As a result, you will develop stains on your teeth that you will not be able to remove with normal brushing.
Cancerous growths can be found in a variety of locations in the mouth, including the tongue, lips, mouth floor, and gums. Although oral cancer is much more common in people over 50, recent studies have shown that oral cancer is also on the rise among people under 30.
The use of nicotine results in significant bone loss in many of our oral surgery patients, requiring a bone graft. The removal of cancerous lesions in the mouth is another common oral surgery procedure due to nicotine use. If you have ever used nicotine or use it currently, please contact our office to schedule an appointment to our oral surgery office in Orland Park, IL so that we may perform a full oral cancer screening.