Smokers use a good reputation for having bad teeth. They get “nicotine stains,” people say, turning their teeth from a brilliant white right into a dull yellow-brown.
Confronted by comments similar to this, most vapers would rightly mention that nicotine in pure form is definitely colourless. It seems obvious that – just like with all the health problems – the problem to your teeth from smoking isn’t the nicotine, it’s the tar.
But they are we actually right? Recent reports on the topic have flagged up vapor e cig being a potential concern, and although they’re quite a distance from showing dental problems in actual-world vapers, it really is a sign that there could be issues in future.
To comprehend the opportunity risks of vaping for your teeth, it makes sense to find out a lttle bit regarding how smoking causes oral health issues. While there are numerous differences between your two – inhaling tar-laden smoke is not the same as inhaling droplets of liquid – vapers and smokers are in contact with nicotine as well as other chemicals within a similar way.
For smokers, dental issues are more likely compared to what they are in never-smokers or ex-smokers. For example, current smokers are 4x as likely to have poor dental health when compared with people who’ve never smoked, and they’re over doubly very likely to have three or maybe more oral health issues.
Smoking affects your oral health in various ways, ranging from the yellow-brown staining and smelly breath it causes right through to more serious dental health issues like gum disease (technically called periodontal disease) and oral cancer. Smokers also have more tartar than non-smokers, which is actually a type of hardened plaque, otherwise known as calculus.
There are additional negative effects of smoking that induce trouble for your teeth, too. As an example, smoking impacts your defense mechanisms and interferes with your mouth’s capability to heal itself, each of which can exacerbate other issues brought on by smoking.
Gum disease is amongst the most typical dental issues in the united kingdom and round the world, and smokers are around doubly likely to get it as non-smokers. It’s infection in the gums and the bone surrounding your teeth, which over time brings about the tissue and bone wearing down and might cause tooth loss.
It’s due to plaque, which is the name for a blend of saliva and also the bacteria within your mouth. Along with creating the gum irritation and inflammation that characterises gum disease, plaque also directly impacts your teeth, leading to teeth cavities.
Whenever you consume food containing a great deal of sugar or starch, the bacteria process the carbohydrates it includes for energy. This procedure creates acid as a by-product. In the event you don’t make your teeth clean, this acid eventually impacts your tooth’s surface and results in decay. But plaque contains a lot of different bacteria, and a few of these directly irritate your gums too.
So while one of several consequences of plaque build-up is far more relevant for gum disease, both lead to troubles with your teeth and smokers will probably suffer both consequences than non-smokers. The impact smoking has on your immune system suggest that when a smoker receives a gum infection as a result of plaque build-up, his / her body is more unlikely so as to fight it away. In addition, when damage is performed due to the build-up of plaque, the impact of smoking on wound healing makes it harder to your gums to heal themselves.
Over time, in the event you don’t treat gum disease, spaces will start to open up involving the gums along with your teeth. This challenge becomes worse as more of the tissues breakdown, and in the end can result in your teeth becoming loose as well as falling out.
Overall, smokers have twice the chance of periodontal disease compared to non-smokers, and also the risk is larger for folks who smoke more and who smoke for longer. On top of this, the problem is less likely to react well whenever it gets treated.
For vapers, understanding the bond between smoking and gum disease invites one question: could it be the nicotine or maybe the tar in tobacco that causes the problems? Needless to say, as vapers we’d be inclined to blame the smoke and tar rather than the nicotine, but will be directly to?
low levels of oxygen in the tissues – and this could predispose your gums to infections, and also reducing the ability of your gums to heal themselves.
Unfortunately, it’s not really clear which explanation or blend of them is bringing about the difficulties for smokers. For vaping, though, you will find clearly some potential benefits. You will find far fewer toxins in vapour, so any issues caused as a result of them will probably be less severe in vapers than smokers.
The last two potential explanations relate straight to nicotine, but there is a couple of things worth noting.
For the idea that nicotine reduces the flow of blood and that causes the issues, there are a few problems. Studies looking directly for your impact of this in the gums (here and here) have discovered either no improvement in the flow of blood or slight increases.
Although nicotine does make the veins constrict, the impact smoking has on hypertension will overcome this and circulation of blood for the gums increases overall. This is basically the opposite of what you’d expect in case the explanation were true, as well as at least shows that it isn’t the main factor at play. Vaping has a smaller amount of a positive change on blood pressure levels, though, hence the result for vapers could possibly be different.
Other idea is the fact that gum tissues are getting less oxygen, which is bringing about the problem. Although research indicates that the hypoxia due to smoking parallels how nicotine acts within the body, nicotine isn’t the sole thing in smoke that can have this effect. Deadly carbon monoxide particularly can be a aspect of smoke (but not vapour) which includes just that effect, and hydrogen cyanide can be another.
It’s not completely clear which would be to blame, but as wound healing (that is a closely-related issue) is affected in smokers however, not in NRT users, it’s unlikely that nicotine alone is doing all the damage as well as nearly all of it.
Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of discussion of this topic conflates nicotine with smoke, and it is then hard to sort out the amount of a part nicotine really has. There isn’t much evidence looking at this associated with e-cig reviews specifically, as you’d expect, but there isn’t much relating to nicotine from smoke whatsoever.
First, there were some studies looking specifically at how vaping affects the teeth. However, these reports have mainly taken the form of cell culture studies. These are classified as “in vitro” (literally “in glass”) studies, and although they’re helpful for knowing the biological mechanisms underpinning the possible health outcomes of vaping (and other exposures, medicines and basically anything), this is a limited method of evidence. Even though something affects a bunch of cells in a culture doesn’t mean it will have a similar effect within a real body system.
With that in mind, the investigation on vaping along with your teeth is summarized by a review from March 2017. The authors address evidence about gum disease, including cell culture studies showing that e-liquids have harmful effects on ligament cells and connective tissues within the gums. Aldehydes in e-cig vapour can have impacts on proteins and affect DNA. Most of these effects could theoretically cause periodontal disease in vapers.
Nicotine also has the potential to result in problems for the teeth too, although again this is dependant on cell studies and evidence from people smoking tobacco. The authors debate that vaping might lead to impaired healing.
But the truth is that presently, we don’t have greatly evidence specifically concerning vaping, and much of the above is ultimately speculation. It’s speculation based upon mechanistic studies of methods nicotine interacts with cells in your mouth, thus it can’t be completely ignored, but the evidence we have so far can’t really say a lot of about what may happen to real-world vapers in practice.
However, there is certainly one study that checked out dental health in real-world vapers, as well as its effects were generally positive. The investigation included 110 smokers who’d switched to vaping and had their dental health examined at the beginning of the investigation, after 60 days and after 120 days. The vapers were split up into those who’d smoked for less than several years (group 1) and the ones who’d smoked for longer (group 2).
At the start of the analysis, 85 % of group 1 experienced a plaque index score of 1, with only 15 of these having no plaque in any way. For group 2, not one of the participants enjoyed a plaque score of , with around three-quarters scoring 2 from 3, and all of those other participants split between scores of 1 and three. By the end in the study, 92% of group 1 and 87 % from the longer-term smokers in group 2 had plaque scores of .
For gum bleeding, at the start of the study, 61% of group 1 participants and 65% of group 2 participants bled after being poked with a probe. Through the final follow-up, 92% of group 1 and 98% of group 2 had no bleeding. They also took a papillary bleeding index, that involves a probe being inserted in between the gum-line and the teeth, and other improvements were seen. At the outset of the investigation, 66% of group 1 and 60% of group 2 participants showed no bleeding, but at the end of the investigation, this had increased to 98% of group 1 and 100% of group 2.
It might simply be one study, however the message it sends is rather clear: switching to vaping from smoking looks to be a good move in terms of your teeth are involved.
The analysis taking a look at real-world vapers’ teeth had pretty good success, but as being the cell research has revealed, there is certainly still some possibility of issues on the long-term. Unfortunately, adding to that study there is very little we can do but speculate. However, perform have some extra evidence we can ask.
If nicotine is accountable for the dental problems that smokers experience – or at least partially in charge of them – then we should see indications of problems in people who use nicotine without smoking. Snus – the Swedish type of smokeless tobacco that’s essentially snuff in the mini teabag – and nicotine gums give two great resources for evidence we are able to use to look into the matter in a bit more detail.
In the whole, evidence doesn’t appear to point the finger at nicotine significantly. One study investigated evidence covering 20 years from Sweden, with over 1,600 participants in total, and discovered that while severe gum disease was more usual in smokers, snus users didn’t are at increased risk in any way. There is certainly some indication that gum recession and loss of tooth attachment is a lot more common with the location the snus is held, but about the whole the likelihood of issues is much more closely linked to smoking than snus use.
Even though this hasn’t been studied around you might think, an investigation in nicotine gum users provides yet more evidence that nicotine isn’t truly the issue. Chewing sugar-containing gum obviously has got the possibility to affect your teeth even without nicotine, but an evaluation between 78 people that chewed nicotine gum for 15 weeks with 79 who chewed non-nicotine gum found no difference whatsoever on such things as plaque, gingivitis, tartar and also other dental health related outcomes. Again, smoking did increase the potential risk of tartar and gingivitis.
Overall, while there are a few plausible explanations for a way nicotine could affect your dental health, evidence really doesn’t support a web link. This is certainly fantastic news for any vapers, snus users or long-term NRT users, however it should go without saying that avoiding smoking and looking after your teeth generally is still essential for your oral health.
In terms of nicotine, evidence we now have to date shows that there’s little to concern yourself with, and the cell studies directly addressing vaping are difficult to draw in firm conclusions from without further evidence. However, these aren’t the sole ways in which vaping could impact your teeth and oral health.
A very important factor most vapers know is the fact that vaping can dehydrate you. Both PG and VG are hygroscopic, meaning they suck moisture from their immediate environment. This is why acquiring a dry mouth after vaping is actually common. The mouth area is near-constant experience of PG and VG and most vapers quickly get familiar with drinking more than ever before to compensate. Now you ask: does this constant dehydration pose a danger to your teeth?
It comes with an interesting paper around the potential link between mild dehydration and dental issues, and overall it stresses that there is no direct proof of a hyperlink. However, there are several indirect items of evidence and suggestive findings that hint at potential problems.
This largely boils down to your saliva. By literally “washing” your teeth as it moves throughout the mouth, containing ions that neutralise acids from your diet, containing calcium and phosphate that may turn back results of acids in your teeth and containing proteins which also impact how molecules communicate with your teeth, saliva is apparently a crucial element in maintaining dental health. If dehydration – from vaping or another type – results in reduced saliva production, this will have a knock-on impact on your teeth to make cavities along with other issues more likely.
The paper highlights that there plenty of variables to take into consideration and that makes drawing firm conclusions difficult, but the authors write:
“The link between dehydration and dental disease will not be directly proved, while there is considerable circumstantial evidence to indicate that this type of link exists.”
And this is the closest we could really reach an answer to this question. However, there are some interesting anecdotes within the comments to this post on vaping along with your teeth (even though article itself just speculates about the risk for gum disease).
One commenter, “Skwurl,” following a year of exclusive vaping, points out that dry mouth and cotton mouth are typical, and this might lead to smelly breath and appears to cause problems with tooth decay. The commenter claims to practice good oral hygiene, but of course there’s absolutely no way of knowing this, nor what their teeth were like before switching to vaping.
However, this isn’t the sole story in the comments, and even though it’s all speculative, together with the evidence discussed above, it’s certainly plausible that vaping can cause dehydration-related issues with your teeth.
The opportunity of risk is significantly from certain, but it’s clear that you have some simple things you can do to lower your likelihood of oral health problems from vaping.
Stay hydrated. This is important for just about any vaper anyway, but given the potential risks relevant to dehydration, it’s especially vital for your teeth. I keep a bottle of water with me constantly, but nevertheless, you undertake it, ensure you fight dry mouth with plenty of fluids.
Vape less often with higher-nicotine juice. One concept that originally originated Dr. Farsalinos (more broadly about lowering the risk from vaping) is the fact vaping more infrequently with higher-nicotine juice is safer than vaping more with lower-nicotine juice. For your personal teeth, this same advice is extremely valid – the dehydration relates to PG and VG, hence the a smaller amount of it you inhale, smaller the outcome is going to be. Technically, if the theories about nicotine’s role in gum disease are true, upping your intake wouldn’t be ideal, but overall it seems nicotine isn’t the key factor.
Pay extra focus to your teeth whilst keeping brushing. Even though some vapers could possibly have problems, it’s obvious that most of us haven’t experienced issues. The explanation for this particular is likely that lots of vapers care for their teeth in general. Brush at least two times per day to minimise any risk and be on the lookout for potential issues. If you see an issue, visit your dentist and get it dealt with.
The good news is this is all quite simple, and aside from the second suggestion you’ll more likely be doing all that you should anyway. However, if you begin to notice issues or perhaps you feel ecigrreviews your teeth are receiving worse, taking steps to lessen dehydration and paying extra attention to your teeth is advisable, together with seeing your dentist.
While e-cigs is likely to be much better for your teeth than smoking, there are still potential issues because of dehydration and also possibly related to nicotine. However, it’s important to have a amount of perspective prior to taking any drastic action, especially with so little evidence to support any concerns.
If you’re switching to a low-risk kind of nicotine use, it’s unlikely to be due to your teeth. You might have lungs to be concerned about, in addition to your heart plus a lot else. The investigation to date mainly targets these more dangerous risks. So regardless of whether vaping does end up having some influence on your teeth or gums, it won’t change the fact that vaping is a better idea than smoking. There are more priorities.