Contemporary Periodontics and Implant Surgery
Contemporary Periodontics and Implant Surgery - Contemporary Periodontics and Implant Surgery
Quitting smoking can be a real issue, even if you know the health risks and potential benefits of giving up. Most people are all too well aware of this habits links to lung cancer and Advanced Periodontal Disease, but the effects on oral health are easy to overlook.
Potential Dental Problems Caused by Smoking
One of the major problems with smoking is that it tends to mask the damage being caused to teeth and gums and this is due to the nicotine in tobacco smoke being a vasoconstrictor. This means that the nicotine causes the blood vessels to contract, reducing the flow of blood to your gums and to your jawbone. The effect is twofold as a reduced blood flow makes it harder for the body to fight infection by reducing the flow of essential nutrients to damaged tissues. At the same time the body is also less able to transport toxins away from the infection site. Secondly, a reduced blood flow makes it harder to see the damage being caused to gums, so if you have any signs of active gum Disease then these will be far less visible.
Other chemicals contained within the smoke will combine with plaque bacteria and this is dangerous because x-rays taken of smoker’s teeth often shows that the jawbone has begun to shrink away from their teeth. This damage can be difficult to detect, producing very few early warning signs of advanced Periodontal Disease,.
Additionally, nicotine affects saliva, causing it to become thicker so it is less able to wash away acid created after eating. As a result heavy smokers can be more likely to suffer from tooth decay than non-smokers, even though they may practice good oral hygiene.
Developing Advanced Periodontal Disease
Will You Lose Your Teeth If You Have Periodontal Disease?
In advanced cases, Dr. Rahmani may have little choice but to extract teeth that have already become loose (Read more: Tooth Extraction Procedure). Smoking masks one of the major signs of gum disease which is bleeding gums and as a result Periodontal disease can be very advanced before a smoker notices there is something wrong with their dental health. Although diligent brushing and flossing may slow down deteriorating gums, it’s often difficult for smokers to thoroughly remove all the plaque from the teeth due to smoking decreasing sensations in the mouth, making it difficult for them to detect areas that may not have been properly brushed.
As a periodontist, Dr. Rahmani is a specialist in treating advanced periodontal disease and is able to provide patients with the very latest techniques and treatments to help slow down this condition. Where teeth are lost then one option is to replace them with dental implants, but smoking is not advisable during this treatment because it does slow down healing.
If you do currently smoke and value your smile, it’s worth thinking about quitting.
Advanced Periodontal Disease and Tooth Loss in Smokers
Contemporary Periodontics & Implant Surgery