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The Effects of Smoking and Vaping on Oral Health

September 08, 2022
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Tobacco use is one of the most dangerous things we can do to our bodies and oral health.

Tobacco use has been shown to cause a variety of oral health problems, such as gum disease, tooth decay, and even cancer. Every dentist can agree that tobacco products also contain many chemicals that can be detrimental to your teeth and gums.

Smoking cigarettes is one of the most common forms of tobacco use. It not only causes these problems in your mouth, but it also increases your risk of developing lung cancer and cardiovascular disease.

The dangers of tobacco are well-known and have been proven time and time again through research studies. However, there are still millions of individuals who smoke cigarettes every day.

Vaping is a popular and controversial topic. However, the effects of vaping on oral health are not so well-known. This article seeks to explore the impact of vaping on your teeth and how you can protect yourself from it.

How Smoking impacts Your Oral Health

The habit of smoking is one of the most common causes of oral cancer. It can also lead to a number of other health problems, such as heart disease and lung cancer. Smoking impacts your oral health in various ways, including:

-Damages your gums

-Increases your risk for periodontal diseases

-Increases your risk for oral cancer

-Decreases saliva production, which can result in tooth decay and gum diseases

It is important for smokers to be aware of the risks smoking poses to their teeth and oral health. They should also be aware that quitting smoking may reverse some of the damage done to their teeth and gums, so it is always worth quitting if you are able to do so. Otherwise, you will have to look into gum disease treatment or cosmetic dentistry to find the fix for your dental problems.

The Effects of Vaping on Oral Health

Vaping has been a popular trend among young adults and teenagers. However, the long-term effects are still unknown.

There are concerns that vaping could cause gum disease and tooth decay. The nicotine inhalation could lead to nicotine addiction, which in turn causes a number of oral health problems like dry mouth and smoker’s palate.

The effects of vaping on oral health are not yet fully known. However, there is consistent growing evidence that suggests that vaping can be harmful to oral health. It stains your teeth, which will require you to look for teeth whitening methods.

One study found that the vapor from e-cigarettes contains high levels of formaldehyde. This substance is known to cause cancer and is also linked with leukemia. The study also found that the vapor contains other carcinogenic substances such as acrolein and acetaldehyde.

Vaping may also lead to tooth discoloration, tooth erosion, and gum recession. That’s because the nicotine in e-cigarettes can lead to a dry mouth, which causes tooth decay as well as gum recession.

Repairing and preventing the damage

A dentist can assist with oral health issues that are caused by smoking and vaping. Treatment can range from surgery to less invasive treatments such as removing plaque and tartar from the sites around teeth and preventing bone damage. Suppose you want the best chance of success in your dental health. In that case, Dr. Ashraf recommends starting an excellent oral care routine today and managing any condition that may positively affect your teeth. It would also help to stop using tobacco or “like” products.

Here are some of the non-surgical gum disease treatments offered by Ashraf Dentistry:

  • Professional dental cleaning. During a dental hygiene examination, your dentist will remove the plaque and tartar and clean between your teeth to remove any bacteria below the gum line. Suppose you think you may be suffering from gum disease. In that case, your dentist may recommend professional dental cleanings and fillings more than twice a year. These are not intended as a treatment but merely a prevention technique to maintain healthy teeth.
  • Scaling and root planning. This deep cleaning is done below the gum line, where plaque and tartar are removed. Any rough spots on the teeth are smoothed to take away plaque build-up. Removing the plaque that builds up around the teeth provides a smooth surface for gum reattachment. This prevents bacteria from getting underneath gum lines and staying there, potentially causing inflammation or more serious health concerns.

Some treatments for gum disease are surgical. Here is a list of such treatments:

  • Flap surgery (pocket reduction surgery) For this procedure, dentists will pull back your gums so the teeth that have a build-up of tartar can be cleaned. At the same time, irregular surfaces of the damaged bone are smoothed. This usually limits those parts where bacteria causing tooth decay can hide. The tooth is placed so that the gum tissue will cover it. This reduces the size of the spaces between teeth and gums, thereby decreasing areas where harmful bacteria can grow. Therefore, there is less chance of this leading to serious health problems.
  • Bone grafts. This procedure uses fragments of your own bone, synthetic bone, or donated bone to replace the gum-damaged areas of your mouth with more robust material that restores stability to teeth. This is based on a new technique called tissue engineering. It helps your body regenerate tissue and bone more quickly.
  • Soft tissue grafts. This procedure can help reinforce thin gums or fill in the receded areas. Grafted tissue, usually taken from the lining of the mouth, is then stitched together to add more tissue to the affected area.
  • Bone surgery. Moderate and advanced bone loss can cause spikes and craters around the tooth, making it difficult for bacteria to gather. Dental implants are surgically placed underneath the gums to fill these empty spaces and eliminate such gaps.


Although there are treatments to assist with the damage caused by smoking, the goal is to prevent these severe cases and take care of your health and oral health. Talk to your healthcare professional and dentist if you are struggling with quitting smoking or vaping.

Ready when you are

Lamine Diallo
Lamine Diallo
02:21 15 Jun 22
My family and I have been receiving care from Dr. Ashraf and his amazing team since we first moved to Waterloo in 2002. His assessment skills are spot on, he is gentle and is very skilled at working with anxious\nervous patients. My dental hygienist is Lin who is very knowledgeable, and passionate about her work. She is amazingly gentle yet very,very thorough when it comes to preventative dental care. She is didactic as well, taking the time to teach patients how to use certain equipment as well as addressing gingivitis in pro-active ways. We are in very capable hands.
Trisa Kapetaneas
Trisa Kapetaneas
18:12 01 Jun 22
I have been a patient here for over 2 years now and I've always enjoyed the experience. The staff are professional and have always made me feel comfortable. I recently had a cleaning done by Lynn for the first time and she was amazing! Will continue to visit for my checkups/cleanings.
Aamir Mirza
Aamir Mirza
14:54 03 May 22
Dr. Ashraf and his team is amazing. All work done under one umbrella for entire family. We all are very happy to be under the care for the last 20 plus years. Lin, dental hygienist is remarkable professional. She knows her job so well that I look forward to my cleaning every time I'm scheduled. Thank you Lin for your amazing work for my entire family!
Alena Delena
Alena Delena
14:50 02 May 22
My family loves Dr Ashraf. We've been through many dentists in many cities and he's by far our favourite one. He's always thorough and professional. His referrals are also of equal high caliber. I went to him for a root canal and a crown. I had many concerns and he addressed them all personally. He even went so far as to redo a root canal for me. Recommend.
Nicole Wood
Nicole Wood
15:31 28 Apr 22
I found Ashraf Dentistry a year ago and I absolutely love their dental clinic. Everyone is very kind and thorough. Lin is the best dental hygienist I've ever had! She takes the time to ensure I receive the care I need. Both dentists I've seen have also been very kind and wonderful at making me feel like my teeth are being taken care of. Highly recommend!
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