Dr. Eric Schoenebeck (Ambler office) is the guest author of “The Tooth About Gum Health.” In the article, Dr. Schoenebeck discusses the importance of maintaining oral health, the disadvantages of dentures as replacements for natural teeth and the increasing link of gum disease to systemic conditions in the body.
Smoking and Gum Disease
Dr. Schoenebeck highlights the dangers of smoking in relationship to our oral health. The CDC, he notes, estimates that smokers have twice the risk of having gum disease as compared to non-smokers. We’ve seen other studies that show that risk factor even higher.
Smoking makes our treatment of your gum disease less effective. Also gum disease, in smokers and non-smokers alike, can quickly progress to more serious stages, like periodontitis, resulting in not just gum sensitivity but shifting of teeth, and, eventually, tooth and bone loss if not properly addressed.
As Dr. Schoenebeck says, “If you smoke, please quit!”
We know that nicotine is incredibly addictive. The National Institute on Drug Abuse recognizes just how hard it can be to quit smoking, estimating that of all the people who try to quit smoking each year, most will require multiple attempts. The website smokefree.gov offers numerous tips on managing cravings with nicotine replacement therapies, and even a way to connect with a trained “quit smoking” counselor.
Your Oral Health is So Important
If you’ve been diagnosed with early-stage gum disease (gingivitis) you can usually reverse the situation with better at-home maintenance and professional cleanings.
If you think you may be suffering from gum disease but haven’t seen a dentist in a while, please don’t hesitate to make an appointment for a consultation with one of our periodontists at either our Philadelphia or Amber office. Referrals are not necessary!