Is Smokeless Tobacco Harmful to My Teeth?￼
Smokeless tobacco can cause serious health problems. Just because you are not smoking it, doesn’t mean it can’t be harmful. Many types of cancers, as well as your teeth and overall oral health, are certainly not safe from the adverse effects of tobacco products.
Types Of Smokeless Tobacco Products
- Chewing Tobacco – This involves products that come in the form of dried and usually flavored tobacco which the user chews or lets sit in their mouth. Most of the time the user spits out the tobacco juices as nicotine gets absorbed through the tissues of their mouth.
- Snuff – Snuff is tobacco that has been finely grounded and placed in a can or pouch. It is usually placed in one’s mouth if moist or inhaled if dry.
- Snus – Instead of being in a loose container like snuff can be, it is held in small tea-bag-like pouches which are placed into a user’s mouth. It is usually seen as a more discrete version of tobacco use than most other types because the need to spit is not as present.
- Dissolvable Tobacco- There are many kinds of dissolvable types of tobacco products that are candy-like, being able to be held in one’s mouth, sucked on, and/or chewed on until dissolved.
What Type Of Health Risks Are Associated With Smokeless Tobacco?
Smokeless tobacco can have bad effects on your oral health.
- Gum Disease
- Gum Recession
- Bone Recession
- Bad Breath
- Tooth Loss
Cancer – Smokeless tobacco is linked to mouth cancer, throat cancer, and pancreas cancer. Smokeless tobacco also can cause leukoplakia patches which are white, blotchy patches that have a high potential to cause cancer.
Addiction – Just like their smoking counterparts, smokeless tobacco products are highly addictive due to their nicotine content. There is no disparity between the amount of nicotine that can enter one’s system and the type of tobacco product used.
As you can see, smokeless tobacco products are just about as bad for you as smoking tobacco products. The harm tobacco products can do extends much farther than just your dental health. Your best course of action is to avoid these types of products altogether. If you need help quitting, do not be afraid to reach out to your doctor to see what they can do to assist you. We are here to help you receive the best dental health, whether you are a smoker or not.