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Are you a long-time smoker thinking of giving up the habit? If so, you have good reason to. Not only is nicotine addiction harming your lungs and body, but it is having a severe impact on your oral health as well.

Smoking tobacco lowers the blood flow to your gums and lowers your vitamin C absorption. This is a problem because healthy gum tissue needs vitamin C to stay healthy. Another effect smoking has on your smile is that it raises your oral temperature and kills needed cells. Other effects of smoking tobacco include:

· Oral cancer and oral lesions.
· Periodontal disease.
· Staining your teeth and tongue.
· Gum recession which is when gum tissue pulls away from the teeth.
· Retardation of healing after oral surgery and periodontal therapy.

If you think you are safe because you don’t smoke tobacco, but instead, chew or dip it, think again. It still sets the stage for gum disease, keratosis of oral mucosa, stains teeth, brings on bad breath, leads to tooth enamel erosion, loss of jaw bone material, the decay of exposed tooth roots and ultimately, tooth loss. When this happens, you may find yourself having trouble speaking, chewing, biting, and being too embarrassed to smile.

Don’t let tobacco destroy your oral health. Our dental specialists support your efforts to quit this habit. If you have any questions or are ready to schedule a consultation with our dentists, Dr. Rebecca Jardine or Dr. Brian J. Hockel DDS in Walnut Creek, CA, please call 925-478-7776 today. We want to help you achieve the healthy, confident smile you deserve!