Are you taking part in Stoptober this year? The government campaign is back for 2016, encouraging smokers to give up their smoking habit this October. With almost 1 million quitters under their belt to date, the campaign is the perfect place to start if you would like to kick the cigarettes this year.
As part of the campaign, the UK’s leading oral health charity, the Oral Health Foundation has looked at the direct effects that smoking is having on the health of your mouth:
1. Yellowing of teeth – Nicotine and tar can turn your teeth yellow very quickly and have the potential to turn brown after years of smoking.
2. Gum disease and tooth loss – Smokers are more likely to suffer from gum disease as gum tissue makes them more vulnerable to infection. This can lead to bone loss in the jaw and the disintegration of the bone holding your teeth into place.
3. Decay and cavities – Smoking causes an increase of bacteria/plaque on teeth, leading to decay and cavities forming.
4. Build up of tartar – When plaque stays on teeth for a prolonged amount of time, it can harden into tartar, which can ultimately lead to receding gums and gum disease.
5. Mouth cancer – Smoking damages cells in the mouth which can then turn cancerous – it is said to be the cause in 2 in every 3 cases of mouth cancer.
6. Bad breath – Cigarettes leave smoke particles in our mouth, throat and lungs, and bad breath is one of the first problems to develop.
7. Spotty mouth – The constant irritation of smoking on the soft tissues inside your mouth causes white and grey patches to develop on the tongue, cheek and floor of your mouth.