Helping Ex Smokers Restore Oral Health
Rectifying the effects of smoking
There used to be a time when almost every adult smoked and it is hard to think back to how that must have been. Fortunately, the reality now is that far fewer people are smoking than ever before, which can only be a good thing for the nation’s health. On the other hand though, if you have smoked, it is possible that some of the effects may still linger on.
There are a number of ways in which smoking is damaging to your oral health. Whether you smoke or not, dental appointments should always be kept, but for ex smokers, there is the added benefit of being able to have great looking teeth and improved oral health once more.
Before we turn to the cosmetic aspects of dental care for ex smokers, it is always important to make sure that your teeth and gums are healthy. This does apply for all patients, but smokers, and to some degree ex smokers, are at a higher risk of certain problems.
The most serious of these problems is oral cancer. Although not the most common cancer, it does happen and can be potentially fatal if not detected. During routine examinations we are trained to notice possible indicators and if we have any concerns at all, we will ask you to see your doctor for further examination. It is important not to panic if we do though; we are simply being cautious and in many cases, the cause of the symptom that we have spotted may be something completely innocent. Of course, it is always better to be safe than sorry and early intervention for this type of issue is critical.
Smokers are at an increased risk of suffering from gum disease and even if you have stopped smoking, it may be a little time before you eliminate the toxins from your body entirely. A visit to the hygienist will allow them to check the health of your gums and also perform a scale and polish to remove any hardened deposits that may be attached to the teeth or gum line. Regular ongoing visits should help to ensure that your gums remain healthy.
Finally, we take a look at one of the more visible signs of being a smoker, or ex smoker. After many years of smoking, most patients will have stained teeth which are a dark shade of yellow, or even brown. The good news is that we can help restore your teeth to their natural colour. First of all, our Bedford cosmetic dentists will need to examine your teeth to determine the severity of the staining. In some cases, where the staining is not too severe (this may depend on if you were a heavy or light smoker), a teeth whitening procedure may be sufficient to restore their whiteness.
For more heavily stained teeth, dental veneers may offer a better solution as they replace a very fine layer of the badly stained surface enamel, with the equivalent thickness of porcelain. This is attached to the teeth using dental adhesive and is trimmed and polished to give a natural appearance and to give you a great smile.
If you have stopped smoking, why not arrange an appointment at The Dental Centre Bedford and take the first steps to having healthy and great looking teeth again? Please call us on 01234 819868.