There are few people who would be unaware that smoking has a negative effect on your health, but few people really think about the effect that smoking has on gum health. Smoking can cause receding gums for a few different reasons. It is possible to correct receding gums, but prevention is always better than finding a cure. If you are currently a smoker, then you have just found a new reason to kick the habit. Once you have receding gums, it is a pretty safe bet that you have gum disease. It is important to get rid of the condition in order to avoid losing teeth and other negative health impacts.
Why Tobacco Matters
Tobacco is found in cigarettes and the tar that comes from it is sticky and thick and can cover the teeth and gum line facilitating the growth of plaque. Plaque is difficult to remove even with the correct brushing technique. A build up of plaque leads to the development of gum disease and this is when you will start to experience receding gums.
Let’s looks a little more closely at how smoking can lead to receding gums:
- Tobacco encourages the build up of bacteria in the mouth, which leads to plaque forming.
- The bacteria and plaque can attack the gums. This happens around the gum line where the gum connects to the teeth.
- The gum tissue then becomes infected and this causes the soft gum tissue to start dying off. Following this the gums begin to pull away from the teeth.
- As the gums recede and pull away from the teeth, there are spaces that form between the gum and the teeth.
- This opens up more spaces between the gum tissue and the teeth, as well as the bone structure holding your teeth in place. More bacteria grow in these spaces and that starts off a vicious cycle of more gum disease and worse symptoms.
- As the condition gets worse, the bacteria can even begin to affect the bones. At this stage the condition is getting serious and professional dental care is absolutely essential.
Smokers are much more likely to develop gum disease than others. Quitting smoking is the best way that you can protect your gum health. In addition, you should improve your oral health routine and practice the 4 Step OraMD Oral Hygiene Program. Visit your dentist for professional advice at the first sign of gum disease or receding gums and you stand a good chance of correcting the condition.