You may be one of the many Americans still habitually smoking cigarettes. You don’t need us telling you that it’s bad for your health; you’ve already heard it before. What you may not know is that your habit is taking a toll on those pearly whites. Every day you smoke, you’re at a greater risk for developing tooth stains, gum disease, and even mouth cancer.
Nicotine and tar are the biggest reasons that your teeth become stained when smoking cigarettes. Nicotine alone is a colorless substance, but mixed with oxygen it becomes a dark yellow hue. When inhaling cigarette smoke, nicotine and tar settle into your oral cavity. They leech their way into the microscopic openings in your enamel, turning them a yellowish brown over time.
How Smoking Affects Your Mouth
Your mouth is home to an incredible amount of naturally occurring bacteria. The average human mouth holds around 600 species of bacteria at any given time. Cigarette smoking affects the microbiome within your mouth every single time you light a cigarette. Proteobacteria composes 4.6% of overall bacteria in smokers, while it makes up almost three times as much (11.7%) of overall bacteria in non-smokers. Proteobacteria are incredibly important, as your mouth relies on them to break down toxic chemicals introduced into your mouth by cigarette smoking. Less production in proteobacteria allows for more disease and germs to fester inside of your mouth.
The Good News
You can’t reverse damage to your lungs or gums, but you can have those tobacco stains removed from your chompers. Visit your dentist for a routine cleaning and whitening to remove stains from the surface level of your enamel. Then stop smoking! The only way to maintain a clean and shiny mouth full of healthy teeth is to practice healthy habits.
Call Catonsville Dental Care For Frequent Dental Cleanings
Catonsville Dental Care provides high-quality dental services to Catonsville, MD, and the surrounding areas. If you’re concerned about your gum health, or any other dental issues, we will be happy to provide you with the service and care that all of our patients have come to expect. We offer dental cleanings, implants, Invisalign, and other dental services as well as routine dental care and corrective treatments. With years of experience and countless testimonials, we’re your one-stop offices for all of your dental needs!