one80dental is proud to support National No Smoking Day as research shows the extra years of life that can be gained by giving up smoking and staying smokefree.
Someone who quits on March 11, and doesn’t smoke again, could gain an extra 7 days of life, every 28 days, for the rest of their life. Along with the health benefits, stopping will save the average smoker over £150 a month and almost £2,000 a year.
Over 8 million people in England smoke and it remains the nation’s biggest killer, with half of long-term smokers dying prematurely from a smoking-related disease.
Tobacco doesn’t just kill, it can do terrible things to the body. It’s hardly surprising with around 4,000 chemicals – including some highly toxic elements being tipped into your mouth every time you light up.
And have you ever wondered what that actually does to your mouth? Think about it: whenever we inhale tobacco smoke, the clouds billow around our teeth, tongue, palate and gums. They take the initial hit and don’t respond too well.
The unpalatable truth is: if you smoke, stained teeth could be the very least of your worries. Plenty of studies confirm that smoking can irritate and damage gum tissue, and cause even greater problems to the underlying bone. Loss of this bone, known as periodontal disease, leads to receding gums and eventually loose teeth.
With the teeth no longer cocooned in healthy gum tissue, the roots become vulnerable to decay. You will know when this happens because your teeth will become more sensitive and your gums more prone to bleeding when you brush.
If your mouth remains unchecked, plaque can build up and harbour increasing colonies of bacteria which may coat the teeth. The plaque could develop into tartar (when you think of tartar, think mortar: the stuff builders use to cement bricks together – it’s quite difficult to remove).
If you haven’t seen your dentist or hygienist by now, you really need to book an appointment. Research indicates that smokers are seven times more likely to develop periodontal disease than a non-smoker.
They are also more prone to deterioration of the bones which house and support the teeth- a key stage in tooth loss. Salivary glands can become infected and people who smoke are much more likely to develop mouth sores and oral cancer – that’s when things start to get even more serious.
We recommend you visit your dentist regularly whether you smoke or not. We can give you a full oral health check, deal with any warning signs and tackle any problems you have. Everything will be done confidentially and we will discuss proposed treatments with you.