Smoking – The Effects On Your Dental Health

It’s a very common fact that tobacco negatively affects your health. There has been so much research that has gone into how much the different ways that tobacco and nicotine can impact your lungs and heart. Another huge impact it has is on your oral health. Keep reading to find out the major harmful effects that smoking has to your dental health.


Periodontitis (gum disease) is a massive risk for people who smoke. The rate that the bone supporting the teeth is lost is often hidden when you are smoking as symptoms can be masked. Smoking can cause the blood flow to the gums to slow down which hides the most common symptom of gum disease – bleeding. Once the gum disease has progressed to bone loss, there is no way to return the bone to its previous state which then causes loose teeth, pain, and infections.

While the bone cannot be restored, gum disease can be maintained with proper cleaning and hygiene. Quitting smoking and regular cleaning at the dentist to clean the deep pockets in the mouth can stop the rate of bone loss and in turn, reduce the number of infections, and missing teeth that would otherwise be there.


Everyone wants a beautiful smile. It is one of the first things people see when they meet you, and with a rise in the demand for teeth whitening, people find a brighter smile makes them more confident. The chemicals in tobacco and nicotine react with the surface of the teeth causing a yellow stain on the teeth.

Slower Healing

As we mentioned earlier, smoking slows down the blood flow to the gums. This doesn’t just hide the symptoms of gum disease; it also delays healing in the mouth. After extractions, low blood flow can cause the area to take longer to heal, which can lead to dry-socket – a painful repercussion to the extraction site not healing properly.

Oral Cancers

Smoking causes a higher risk of oral cancers in the tongue, palate, and floor of the mouth. If you are a smoker, it is extremely important that you are getting frequent checks to catch early signs before they get worse. At Koo Wee Rup Dental Surgery, our dentists perform regular oral cancer checks for all patients to give them peace of mind.

Quitting smoking is the best way to avoid increased risks of gum disease, staining and oral cancers. We are aware that it is an extremely hard thing to do for some patients. If you would like to discuss quitting smoking with our dental team, they can point you in the best direction to take to reduce your risks.