Everyone knows smoking is bad for them. Yet it never hurts to have another reason to give up the unhealthy habit. As you can probably guess, smoking has adverse effects on your oral hygiene. Unlike many other equally serious side effects, though, many of these issues are things that others can immediately notice, as well. So if you’re on the fence on quitting, keep reading for the oral health information you may need for that final push.
There are a number of reasons that your cigarette addiction may be weakening your immune system, which is never a good thing. When this happens, your mouth could easily pay the price. Take your gums, for example. This essential tissue needs all the help it can get, especially when it comes to fending off gingivitis, which is often the beginning of full-fledged gum disease.
However, an immune system that can’t perform to its best abilities won’t be able to assist your gums. As a result, they can become noticeably red and even begin receding. Neither of these features is particularly attractive and can even make it difficult to properly clean your teeth without pain and bleeding.
Furthermore, if you don’t stop smoking, any attempts at treating the onset of gum disease will be met with unnecessary resistance. So not only will your habit bring on this painful and unsightly affliction, it will make it much harder to fight off, too.
Increased Risk of Infection
For the same reasons your gums are at risk when you smoke cigarettes, so is the rest of your mouth. A weakened immune system leaves you open for infection. Of course, exposing the inside of your mouth to all those hot chemicals doesn’t help, either. When considered altogether, that cigarette you’re sucking on is actually a very efficient way of delivering an infection to the inside of your mouth.
Although it probably doesn’t need to be said, infections are not comfortable, especially when they strike your mouth. No one will find it an attractive addition, either.
Many of us go to extreme lengths to get whiter teeth. If we’re not putting strips in our mouths every day, we’re visiting the dentist for professional bleaching that can cost thousands of dollars.
Yet a lot of us then work against these investments in both time and money by smoking cigarettes on a regular basis, as well.
There are a number of ways this causes problems for our teeth. One is simply that cigarettes contain nicotine and nicotine is great for staining your teeth in very serious ways. So, you’ll need to work overtime if you want to get those nicotine stains cleaned away. Of course, this could cost much more money, too. With packs of cigarettes continuously rising in price, this is quite a premium to add on top.
Fortunately, you may not have to worry about it for long. For those of you who smoke a pack a day, you can expect to lose somewhere between one-and-a-half and three teeth in ten years, according to The Academy of General Dentistry. In general, you’re twice as likely, as a smoker, to lose your teeth than those who abstain.
If you’re a smoker who doesn’t realize people don’t want to be around you when your breath smells of cigarettes, you have many very courteous individuals in your life. However, it’s common knowledge that nonsmokers find the smell of cigarettes repulsive.
One reason you may not recognize this is because you’re used to it. However, cigarette smokers are proven to have a reduced ability to taste and smell, as well. So, you could have all kinds of foul odors on your breath and not even know it.
Aside from the risks of oral cancer and the vast number of other versions you’re at an increased risk for as a smoker, your mouth alone contains a number of reasons you should quit. The effects cigarettes will have on your oral hygiene will be expensive, unattractive, painful and potentially fatal.