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Vaping and the Effects on Dental Health

March 14, 2024

vaping alrez Committing to your dental and oral health means more than just a commitment to brushing twice per day. Avoiding harmful substances – like sugar and alcohol – can go a long way to improving teeth and gum health, but there is another, more trendy activity that may be doing a lot more damage than people realize.

What is Vaping?

Vaping. It even sounds ‘cool’. As more and more people have realized the devastating consequences of smoking, a new fad has filled the space. Unfortunately, it is just as (if not more so) dangerous as cigarettes. Vaping is the use of an electronic device – usually in the form of a ‘vape pen’ or other e-cigarette – to administer flavored nicotine. These vape pens are incredibly dangerous because the aerosol used is comprised of not just nicotine, but other toxic chemicals and heavy metals that are known carcinogens. In recent studies and news reports, vaping has hospitalized many users because the chemicals will cause burns in the lungs along with heart issues.

Sadly, the companies promoting vaping have made it very appealing. Vape pens come in many colors and the flavors are desired by a largely younger (mostly teen) demographic. Some vape pens look like USBs, making them hard for parents to identify.

Vaping and Your Teeth

The effects of cigarettes on your teeth and gums have become well-known. But, what about vaping?  When it comes to your teeth and gums, vaping is just as damaging as cigarettes and can actually be worse. While cigarettes turn your teeth yellow & lead to lung cancer, vaping takes this a step further. Here are some potential risks associated with vaping:

  • Dry Mouth. Your mouth relies on healthy levels of saliva. Dry mouth puts people at risk for tooth decay.
  • Nicotine Effects. This dangerous substance wreaks havoc on our bodies – not just our mouths. It can cause causes the narrowing of blood vessels which can affect the health of the gums and contribute to gum disease. Nicotine can also contribute to teeth grinding (bruxism), which can lead to tooth damage and jaw discomfort.
  • Inflammation. Harsh chemicals in vaping liquids, including flavorings and other additives, may irritate the gums and contribute to inflammation, sensitivity, bleeding, and gum disease.
  • Cell Death. Using vaping juices may lead to cellular damage in the mouth and throat which lead to oral cancers.
  • Tooth Sensitivity. The acidic components in e-cigarettes cause serious enamel damage, leading to an increase in tooth sensitivity and cavities.
  • Bad Bacteria. Vaping will alter the microbial environment of your mouth – which can lead to many serious issues.
  • Oral Cancer. Vaping can lead to serious oral diseases.

Our Commitment to Education and Healthy Dental Habits

Alrez Family Dentistry is committed to helping our patients establish good dental habits. This includes promoting brushing and flossing daily, seeing our team regularly for cleanings, and trusting Dr. Alrez during routine exams to check for things like oral cancer or other serious issues. Vaping is still relatively new, but the trend is very dangerous – not just for your teeth.

Parents, it is especially important to talk with your teens about the consequences of vaping. This can lead to more than just ‘yucky teeth’. If you have been vaping and are ready to put this habit in the past – schedule a routine cleaning and exam with our team to ensure there are no lasting effects. You’ve got a great dental support system on your side!