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Tobacco and Your Teenager’s Teeth

women smoking

It may surprise you to learn that as many as 90% of all smokers began smoking as teenagers. More than 3,000 American children under the age of 18 experiments with smoking every day. Tobacco use can lead to nicotine addiction and very serious diseases, including cancer of the mouth, throat, and lungs. In addition to your child’s overall health, tobacco use can also pose a serious risk to dental health as well.

How Tobacco Can Harm Teeth

Tobacco has been shown to cause the following dental problems:

  • Chronic bad breath
  • Stained gums and teeth
  • Delayed healing after oral procedures and surgery
  • Gum disease and periodontitis (an advanced form of gum disease)
  • Oral cancer

Vaping and E-Cigarettes

The CDC reported in 2013 that around 1.7 million middle and high school students had admitted to trying e-cigarettes and experimenting with vaping. That number has only increased as the years have gone by. The reason why kids have reportedly tried these methods of tobacco use was to be socially accepted by peers and to appear ‘cool.’

Teenagers who experiment with vaping and e-cigarettes are much more likely to start smoking traditional cigarettes as adults. No method of tobacco usage is safe, including e-cigarettes and vaping.

The best way to prevent your child from using tobacco is to actively discourage them from smoking and educating them about the dangers of tobacco use. Let your children know that, even if their peers believe that vaping and e-cigarettes are safer than traditional cigarettes, they are not.

The use of tobacco products can cause infection in the mouth, meaning that your child may end up needing a root canal in an abscessed tooth. To learn more about root canal therapy, or if you’re in need of endodontic care, please contact Endodontic Specialists at one of our two locations in Colorado Springs and Pueblo, Colorado.

Posted on Dec 23, 2019
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