It’s well-known that smoking is harmful to oral health. Smoking can cause:
- Cavities and gum disease: The cigarette’s tar and nicotine stimulate bacterial plaque that can develop under the gums. Smokers are three times more likely to have cavities.
- Stains and bad breath: Tar and nicotine can also stain the teeth’s enamel, which can become permanent over time.
- Loss of taste and smell: Smoking impairs both taste and smell. Many smokers add more salt and sweeten their food in order to better taste it, which can lead to a poor diet.
- Cancer: It is by far the most serious, but unfortunately a real, health problem. Smoking can cause cancer of the mouth, tongue, gums or throat.
We know how hard it is to quit smoking. However, many of the harmful effects listed above can be prevented by simple, regular checkups at the dentist.