Do you know the effects of smoking and vaping on teeth? Some studies show that vaping can actually harm your oral health. Smoke from traditional cigarettes or e-cigarettes damages dental enamel due to their harshness. Acids in smoke solutions break down proteins which are essential for maintaining current tooth structure as we age; they also contribute more risk factors towards erosion than anything else.
Vaping is an alternative smoking device making its way to popularity with vaping liquids becoming more widely available in many different flavors. Vaping is associated with electronic cigarettes which release vapor instead of smoke, leaving no ash behind. While vaping has not been around long enough for researchers to determine vaping’s precise effect on the body, vaping liquid is known to contain chemicals like propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin along with food flavorings and nicotine that are harmful to the body.
At this point, vaping has already been linked to a number of effects on the mind and body including damage to lungs, increased risk for lung infections, increased risk for heart attacks, bad breath, sinus irritation, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, nausea, teeth damage, and vomiting. In addition, vaping has been identified as a possible gateway to smoking for teens.
Vaping harmful chemicals like nicotine, tobacco, pesticides and other toxins can also be damaging to the mouth. Nicotine is known to cause tooth sensitivity , dry mouth, and gum disease. Damage from vaping comes in the form of stains, bad breath, plaque build-up, cavities, discoloration or yellowing of teeth, gum recession or inflammation along with increased risk for tooth loss .
Candied fruit vaping flavors may damage your teeth because they are high in sugar content. The safest vaping flavors are typically fruits that have low sugar levels including lemons, limes, grapefruit, pomegranate, and cranberry.
Many vaping devices can be just as bad for teeth as traditional cigarettes and do not contain filters with the exception of vaping pens that may have a filter that is usually made from fiber or metal mesh. The vaping device also has an effect on vaping’s effect on teeth as vaping devices such as tank systems, vape mods, and vaping pens can produce hot spots which increase acidity levels .
The most common problems associated with vaping include dental erosions caused by acids found in vaping liquids, oral infections including those caused by bacterial growth, dry mouth, red gums, gum disease, and tooth sensitivity. Those who vape and smoke are more likely to suffer from these effects than those who only vape.
Teeth damaged by vaping typically have severe enamel erosion that leads to exposed and weakened tooth roots. Without enamel, teeth become more susceptible to tooth decay and the effects of acid wear on teeth. The exposed root surface makes it easier for plaque bacteria to colonize and leads to an increase in bacterial infections that can cause abscesses.
In-office exams are a great opportunity for Dr. Botero to discuss the dangers of vaping and smoking on teeth, gums, and oral health with your child.
During a dental exam, Dr. Botero evaluates your child’s risk for developing oral problems through a thorough examination. She uses digital x-rays to see below the surface of teeth and gums to prevent hidden decay from becoming serious or getting worse!
Call Li’l Sunshine Smiles Dentistry today at 813-576-0200 to schedule an exam and cleaning for your child. We are excited to help you with your oral care journey and welcome you to our dental family!