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How does smoking affect your mouth?

Smoking has many adverse effects, including their impact on the health of your teeth and gums. The most noticeable and immediate effects of smoking include:

  • Stained teeth and/or tongue

  • Discolouration of the gums

  • Bad breath

  • Loss of taste and smell

  • Changes in the appearance of the roof of the mouth

Over time the chemicals in tobacco products can reduce the flow of saliva in the mouth. As a result, it becomes easier for plaque and tartar to build up around the teeth and gums. If not removed professionally, this can lead to risk of developing periodontal diseases. Inflammation of the gums caused by buildup can lead to loss of bone and tissue that surround and support the teeth. Without sufficient support the teeth can loosen and wobbly, causing pain or in more serious cases leading to teeth falling out.

In addition to this, smoking interferes with the normal functioning of the gum tissue. The nicotine reduces blood flow to your mouth hand gums. This often results in higher risk of infections and prolonged healing times for dental treatments or injuries (e.g. cuts, ulcers or scratches).

Furthermore, one of the most widely known effects associated with smoking is oral cancer. The Oral Cancer Foundation provides that ‘when tobacco and alcohol use are combined, the risk of oral cancer increases 15 times more than non-users of tobacco and alcohol products’.

For further information or to schedule your regular check up and clean appointment, contact the clinic on 9809 1533.

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