Does Smoking Really Cause Gum Disease?

There are many factors that can increase your risks of gum disease, but if you smoke or chew tobacco, then that may be one of the most significant ones. It’s no myth that smoking can cause gum disease: according to numerous studies, people who use tobacco are often several times more likely to develop than disease than those who don’t. Today, we examine exactly what gum disease is, and why habits like tobacco use are such a substantial reason why it’s still one of the most prevalent chronic dental conditions.

Understanding What Gum Disease Is

Gum disease, or periodontal disease, is the progressive destruction of your gums, periodontal ligaments, and jawbone structure. Specifically, it’s caused by harmful oral bacteria and the toxic substances they produce, including inflammatory agents that cause unchecked swelling in your oral tissues. These molecules affect your immune system’s ability to control inflammation, which taxes your immune system as a whole, making it harder to fight off other harmful, foreign agents – including the carcinogens and other chemicals found in tobacco.

The Influence of Smoking (or Any Tobacco Use)

Despite the high level of awareness about the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes and chewing tobacco, companies that make such products still include them. This includes hundreds of substances known to cause various diseases and increase risks of issues such as periodontal disease and oral cancer. The best way to avoid the influence of smoking on your oral and overall health is to stop smoking as soon as possible. For optimal results, speak with your periodontist about the benefits of professional smoking cessation therapy.

Quit Smoking and Improve Your Periodontal Health

Smoking and chewing tobacco are among the biggest threats to your periodontal health, as well as to your overall health and wellbeing. To learn how you can quit with smoking cessation therapy, schedule a consultation with Dr. Kania by calling her periodontal office in Encinitas/San Diego, CA, at (760) 642-0711.