While most people are aware of the dangers that smoking results in, it is surprising to most that dentists can have the ability to not only inform others on smoking effects on overall health, but also the damaging effects of smoking on oral health. Smoking and other tobacco products have been linked to periodontal, or gum, disease through affecting the attachment of bone and soft tissue to teeth. Along with increasing the risk of periodontal disease, smoking has been linked to specific cancers. There are toxins and carcinogens present in tobacco products, including cigars, cigarettes, pipe tobacco, and chewing tobacco. The American Lung Association has found that cigarettes cause 90% of all lung cancer deaths. Smokers of cigars and pipes have an increased risk of cancer of the oral cavity as well as the overall body. Also, don’t be swayed into thinking that tobacco products are harmless; while they are “smokeless” options including chewing tobacco, there are still more than 28 cancer-causing chemicals found in this form of tobacco. Chewing tobacco can cause cancer in the cheek, gums and lips, and this cancer usually developed where the tobacco is held in the mouth. Regardless of what form of smoking, there is no doubt that smoking is harmful to the oral cavity and the overall health of the body.
The American Cancer Society is holds an event called Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday of November to encourage current smokers to use that day to make a solid plan to quit, or to start making plans prior to the event and to quit on the day of. The American Cancer Society explains that smokers are most successful in stopping the habit is to have access to smoking-cessation hotlines, stop-smoking groups, counseling, nicotine replacement products, online quit groups, and encourage and support from friends and family members. When smokers implement two or more of these sources, they have a better chance of quitting.
Feel free to contact Drs. Ali & Ali and the caring team at Wellesley Dental Group if you have any thoughts or concerns; they will be happy to answer your questions! Contact us today at 781-237-9071 or firstname.lastname@example.org to set up an appointment and consultation.