The Truth About Why Your Pinehurst Dentist Wants You to Quit
In the media, smoking seems to be criticized and judged more harshly than any other lifestyle behavior. Smoking is a legal activity, it is a big business around the world, and it is strictly regulated. So why are there so many negative advertisements and warnings regarding the dangers of cigarettes and tobacco?
Why would your Pinehurst dentist or hygienist take the time to encourage you to quit?
We have all heard the warnings that smoking can lead to gum disease or that the habit can make your teeth fall out. There is a wealth of available information to support those claims, and your dental professionals have an ethical responsibility to discuss the facts with you.
While bacterial plaque and tarter are known to cause gum disease, scientists have discovered that smoking is the leading risk factor for the infection. It’s a preventable risk factor, meaning that the risk for gum disease could be greatly reduced simply by quitting smoking.
What exactly does smoking do to your oral health?
Smoking tightens the blood vessels that nourish your body (including your gums), preventing blood from flowing into your tissues. Without a healthy blood flow, the gums and teeth fail to receive vital nutrients and oxygen.
A weak or compromised immune system is another side-effect of smoking. Whereas your body might normally be able to fight off a gum infection, a poor immune response leaves you vulnerable and unprotected. Weakened immunity may also make it difficult for your gums to heal after an infection or a traumatic accident.
Studies show that untreated gum disease is responsible for total tooth loss in almost half of daily smokers over the age of 65. Fortunately, it is never too late to quit smoking and bring your gums back to a state of good health. If you are a smoker, consult your dentist in Pinehurst today. You can get the help that you need to kick your habit and get your smile back in shape.