Can Smoking Cause Cavities

Every year, The World Health Organization arranges and annual event to build awareness of the health risks associated with using tobacco. Professionals in the dental field have been long aware of the link between tobacco use and poor oral health. When it comes to dental health one of the main questions people ask is: can smoking cause cavities?

Can Smoking Cause Cavities

Whether you currently use tobacco, used it in the past or thinking about using it, the chances are you’ve heard it not safe or benign. Tobacco use is a major health risk that can endanger multiple organ systems. But may people are unaware that tobacco use is a ticket to more cavities and even causes plaque to form. Tobacco use has been shown to risk your health in many ways, including your oral health.

Tobacco and Cavities Go Hand In Hand

A major study examined teens who had used tobacco and those who had never used the drug. The evidence revealed that teens who had used tobacco had a higher rate of dental cavities, even when external factors such as socioeconomic status were controlled for. Another study that looked at females in correctional facilities revealed similar results. When your dental practitioner asks you to quit using tobacco for oral health reasons, you should know that their advice is backed by scientific evidence.

Smokeless Does Not Equal Danger-Free

While many people assume that smokeless tobacco such as chewing tobacco or snuff is a safer alternative to cigarettes for your oral health, evidence shows that they’re worse. Research shows higher incidences of cavities among users of smokeless tobacco. At least one study shows that regular non-smoked tobacco users have four times the risk of cavities at the tooth root. Chewing tobacco has been shown to have the highest risk of cavities more than any other type of tobacco use, and the longer one chews tobacco, the higher the risk that they’ll get cavities. Chewing tobacco has a high sugar content, and given that it’s held at the tooth root for extended periods of time, that increases the risk of cavities.

Biofilm Thrives in Nicotine

A scientific study has given some more insight into one of the ways tobacco use could increase the risk of cavities. Examinations of S. mutans (the bacteria most commonly associated with cavity-causing biofilms) showed that they were thicker and more metabolically active when exposed to nicotine.

Can Smoking Cause Cavities

What’s to Be Done?

It goes without saying that the best way to avoid oral health problems linked to tobacco use is never to use it in the first place. However, if you still use tobacco or have been a user before, be sure to visit your dentist regularly and keep up with your dental hygiene. Consider investing in products specifically designed to help control oral biofilm to help control known complications of using tobacco.

Bottom Line

so, can smoking cause cavities? The short answer is yes. Smoking increases the risk of cavities. It helps to spread the word that tobacco use is a danger not only to your dental health but also your overall health.

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