How Chewing Tobacco Can Be Detrimental For Your Oral Health

How Chewing Tobacco Can Be Detrimental For Your Oral Health

August 1, 2022

Many people know that chewing tobacco can cause damage to their health and appearance, but few are aware of the effect the smokeless tobacco has on their teeth and gums, which can be so devastating.

Smokeless tobacco, also known as chewing tobacco or snuff, can have as many detrimental effects on your oral health as cigarettes and other forms of tobacco. This can range from discoloration and gum disease to throat, oral, and lung cancer. therefore, tobacco use has many harmful e

The Dangers of Chewing Tobacco

Just because smokeless tobacco is chewed and not inhaled does not mean that they are less harmful. Chewing tobacco can have a multitude of dental health issues when you use it habitually or sporadically. Some of the dangers of chewing tobacco to your oral health include:

  1. Bad Breath

Chewing tobacco makes your mouth dry and may also irritate your gums, which are all conductors of bad breath.

  1. Teeth discoloration and cavities

Smokeless tobacco contains sugar as one of the ingredients to enhance its flavor. However, when these substances sit pressed against your cheeks and teeth, they can easily lead to tooth decay, and discoloration as the substances may seep into your teeth. The smokeless tobacco also contains sand or grit that wears down your teeth, furthering the tooth erosion and sensitivity.

  1. High Risk of Developing Cavities

People who chew tobacco suffer from a higher risk of cavities, especially at the gum line. In the cases of smokeless tobacco, the chances of developing cavities are higher because of the high content of sugar present, which is held by your teeth for long periods.

  1. Development of gum or periodontal disease

Because of the constant nature of the gritty substance placed close to your teeth, irritation will always result. When your gums are irritated, they can pull away from your teeth, leaving your surfaces and roots exposed, making them sensitive to hot or cold food and drinks. This constant irritation of your gums can weaken them and eventually lead to periodontal disease.

  1. Higher chances of developing mouth, lip, throat, or pancreatic cancer.

How to Protect Your Oral Health from the Harmful Effects of Chewing Tobacco

The best way to protect your oral health from the impacts of tobacco use is by quitting the habit, but this is not always easy. However, that does not mean that there is nothing that you can do. Tobacco users can take these preventive measures to reduce the harmful effects by following these tips:

  • Brushing properly

Chewing tobacco can make you susceptible to gum disease and tooth decay. According to the research done by Center for Disease Control and Prevention research, a person who smokes or chews tobacco is twice the risk of getting gum disease compared to non-smokers. Therefore, you need to brush at least twice a day using a good quality toothbrush and toothpaste specially formulated for smokers.

A toothpaste explicitly targets nicotine and tobacco stains to keep your teeth white. There is also fluoride toothpaste that protects your gums.

  • Eat more tooth-friendly food

Opt for food high in fiber and calcium as they help strengthen the enamel, act as a natural tooth cleaner and neutralize mouth acids.

  • Maintain Your Dental Appointments

You should visit your dentist near you at least twice a year or get professional dental cleanings. Your dentist will remove debris and tartar build-up and also check your mouth for potential dental problems such as oral cancer

How Dentists Can Help You

Quitting chewing or smoking tobacco may not be so easy, and your dentist at UR Smile Dental Group may be able to act as a support system for you to stop the habit. Your dentist may or may not ask you about your tobacco use, but it is okay to approach them to help them guide you on what to do.

Your dentist may also perform oral cancer screenings in Clute, TX, to help you detect if there are any signs of oral cancer that your tobacco chewing may cause.

Your dentist at Clute TX can also help you establish connections with counseling programs to help you quit or help you identify your motivation for quitting, which can be an important component in the quitting strategy.

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