Smoking Can Cause Gum Diseases Too
Smoking is the causative factor for many respiratory diseases and even gum diseases. Cigarette contains nicotine which is responsible for developing gum disease. More the amount of nicotine, more is the tendency to develop gum disease. Even frequency of smoking has an effect on gum disease.
Our mouth contains numerous beneficial bacteria that produces saliva and protects it from any unwanted foreign substances. Smoking kills these healthy micro-organisms, thus making the mouth open to pathogen attack.
Apart from killing the beneficial organisms, smoking also kills the healthy tissues of the mouth. It constricts the veins present in the mouth region preventing the flow of nutrients and blood to the tissues. The nicotine present in the cigarettes interrupts the oxygen supply to the gums. This in turn enhances the multiplication of bacteria in the gums. Bacteria causes pain and bleeding of the gums, foul smell from the mouth and thick tongue.
Smoking causes gum disease in following ways:
- By not allowing the nutrients to reach the gums.
- It increases the free radicals in the mouth area. These free radicals kill the cells and tissues surrounding the gums.
- The harmful chemicals present in the cigarette block the blood supply to the gums and also erode the bones present in the mouth.
- Gum disease causing bacteria like a perfectly dry area to breed and grow. Normally mouth is watery due to presence of saliva, but continuous smoking makes it dry enough to support the growth of gum disease causing bacteria.
Smoking makes people more sensitive to develop gum diseases. Avoiding smoke can decrease the occurrence of gum disease by about 40%. Regular visits to the dentist are also essential to maintain a disease free gum. Quit smoking and take proper dental hygiene to keep your smile safe and beautiful.
Source: Onlymyhealth editorial team Feb 24, 2012
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