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Greensboro, NC 27408

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Greensboro Dental Clinic, Dr. Margaret Szott | ALL blog posts
December 27, 2018

Vaping: Is it safer that cigarettes?

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A new AP report indicates that while teen drug use is down, twice as many teens are vaping this year when compared to last. Vaping is done with e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes do not contain tobacco, but they do contain nicotine which is delivered to the lungs via an aerosol or vapor. Nicotine is an addictive substance that is known to cause cancer.

young man smoking e-cigarette

Nicotine also adversely affects your oral health in the following ways:

  1. It reduces the amount of blood that can flow through your veins depriving the gums of necessary oxygen and nutrients needed to stay healthy. This can lead to periodontal disease and/or gum recession. When gum disease sets in, the gum tissue gets red, irritated, and swollen. Bone can be lost which will cause teeth to become loose and in the most severe cases, fall out.
  2. Nicotine limits your salivary production. Saliva is a natural “bath” for your teeth to constantly wash away plaque and bacteria and buffer acids that can lead to tooth decay. A dry mouth can also contribute to bad breath.
  3. Nicotine is a stimulant that causes muscles to become overactive and can lead to or exacerbate tooth grinding. This condition is known as bruxism and causes severe wear and damage to your teeth that sometimes leads to ultimate tooth loss.

The take home message here is that vaping introduces nicotine to your body just like cigarettes. Both products can cause complications with your oral and dental health. If you are a smoker or vaper, it is very important to stay on top of your regular dental check-ups.

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