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What Are E-Cigarettes Doing To Your Oral Health?

For some while now there’s been a bit of a divide as to whether smoking trendy E-cigarettes, or vapes as they are often called, is better for your health, or worse, than smoking tobacco based products. As a dentist in Southend we know only too well the effects that smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes have on oral health.

Risk from tobacco smoke

oral healthThe risks to a person’s oral health from smoking conventional cigarettes are widely understood and accepted, namely:

  • The risk of periodontal disease is 7 times higher in someone who smokes cigarettes than in a non-smoker
  • Smokers are twice as likely to lose their teeth than non smokers
  • The risk of oral cancer in smokers is between 5 and 10 times for likely than in a non-smoker

E-cigs are promoted as a cleaner, healthier alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes. They don’t leave behind the yellow stained fingers and smell of smoke like traditional tobacco cigarettes, and according to a press release issued by the UK Government in August 2015, they’re “95% less harmful than tobacco.”

More about the Government review

The key findings of the Government review as set out in the recent press release were that:

  • E-cigs are 95% less harmful than tobacco based products
  • Almost half the population don’t realise that E-cigs are significantly less harmful than conventional tobacco cigarettes
  • There is no evidence to suggest that E-cigarettes lure non smokers or children into smoking

What’s more the review also found out that practically all of the 2.6million people using E-cigs in the UK were ex smokers or people trying to give up smoking.

Any type of smoking has a detrimental effect on your oral health although, admittedly, there is far less risk associated with E-cigarettes. It’s good news that the majority of people using them are ex smokers or smokers trying to give up and if they succeed, then that’s music to our ears.

The Effects of Nicotine

Nicotine restricts the blood flow which inhibits the mouth’s natural cleansing and disease fighting abilities. It also impacts on the body’s ability to heal itself and generate new healthy cells and tissue. E-cigs contain a form of vaporised nicotine which is derived from tobacco and when a person uses nicotine, they become more prone to gum disease. The unfortunate effect of gum disease is that it can progress to periodontitis, which in turn can undermine the bone and cause the loss of teeth. While dental implants in Southend are one of the best replacements for missing teeth, people who smoke are often turned down for treatment because this habit has a detrimental effect on implants, and is likely to cause them to fail. As a result, dentists ask smokers to quit smoking for several months before, during, and after the dental implant treatment.

You’ll be surprised by the difference to your oral health that even just cutting down on the number of cigarettes that you smoke, can make. If you manage to quit altogether and you’re missing teeth, then you may also become eligible for dental implants in Southend. If you’re trying to stop smoking then we’ll do all we can to support you, so why not come along and have a chat with us.

Here at Southend Dental Care we review all cases on an individual basis, ad just because you may not be eligible right now for dental implants, it doesn’t rule out the possibility altogether. Call us today on 01702 465000 to book a consultation or contact us online www.southenddentalcare.co.uk.

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