Smokers Are At Increased Risk Of Developing Gum Disease

Scientists have recently discovered that people who smoke tobacco are at an increased risk of developing chronic gum disease or periodontitis. Knowing the negative health impacts of tobacco smoking, smokers may feel motivated towards quitting this habit. It has been found that some bacteria in the mouth responsible for periodontal disease respond to the chemicals found in tobacco and cause gum disease and other oral complications. Furthermore, if a person has undergone oral surgery it may take longer to heal if they smoke tobacco and the condition starts deteriorating.People who smoke regularly have difficult-to-remove plaque on their teeth, which greatly contributes to developing gum disease later on in life. Moreover, excessive use of tobacco products make them lose bone and tissue that support the teeth, thereby making them vulnerable to bacteria attacks. Periodontal disease progresses with time, if no proper treatment is provided on time. It is therefore advisable to go through professional cleaning periodically as well as visit the dentist regularly to avoid further problems.Nicotine found in tobacco can compress the blood vessels, decrease oxygen flow to the gum tissue, and make it diseased. It has also been established that smoking contributes to serious oral problems in addition to gum disease, which include oral cancer. Since gum disease starts as an infection, it worsens when the person’s immune system fails to fight this condition properly. And it’s a known fact that smoking suppresses the immune system, thus making the person more susceptible to attacks by viruses and bacteria.Scientists have shown that the bacterium Porphyromonas gingivalis is the one that changes its structure and properties in response to coming in direct contact with chemicals found in tobacco. Due to this change, the immune system fails to recognize this bacterium as a harmful one and ignores its impact on oral health of the person. As a result, no antibodies are produced to fight against this infection. And because of this reason, smokers are generally resistant to the treatment of periodontal disease. However, now that the cause of this resistance has been found, treatments that are more efficient will now be available to cure gum disease in its early stages.People who have quit smoking have better chances of getting rid of gum disease or infection in its early stages. It has also been found that smoking may conceal some important symptoms of gum disease, thereby making it difficult to identify. If you smoke on a regular basis and see any of the symptoms of gum disease, you should immediately see a doctor. Some of these conditions include chronic bad breath, loosening of teeth, receding gum line, and changes in the bite.The best way to prevent gum disease and other oral complications associated with this illness is to quit smoking for good. Never underestimate the value of regular dental check-ups and proper oral hygiene. You should be aware that if the disease is not diagnosed in its early stages, it becomes very difficult to cure. So, save your teeth and overall oral health by saying no to tobacco smoking.