By Brittany Flax on Mar 19, 2020 @ 02:00 PM
You walk down the street and are enveloped by a cloud of smoke that smells like … strawberries? Known as Electronic cigarettes, E-cigs or Vapes – it’s a craze that has proven it’s here to stay. Coming in all different shapes, sizes and nicotine flavors, vaping is supposed to be less harmful than smoking cigarettes and help people quit their tobacco habits. But, does it really work? One thing that’s for certain is just like cigarettes, vaping is harmful for your oral health. Here’s how your mouth is affected:
Excess Bacteria and Inflammation
In a recent study reported by USA News, researchers found that vaping alters the natural balance of bacteria, known as microbiomes, found in your mouth. This can lead you to become more vulnerable to oral infections and inflammation.
Dry Mouth and Irritation
E-cig’s and vapes use a base liquid called e-liquid or e-juice. This liquid consists of water, nicotine, flavorings, and a propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin base. Propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin can cause dry mouth, which is associated with bad breath, mouth sores and tooth decay. It can also cause mouth and throat irritation with repeated use, resulting in tender, red or swollen gums.
Another recent study suggests that the aerosols from vaping can increase inflammation and DNA damage of live gum cells. This can lead to the cells losing their power to divide and grow which can speed up the cell’s aging process and result in their death. How does this play a role in your oral health? Well, it could cause issues like periodontal disease, bone loss, tooth loss, dry mouth and tooth decay – but more research is needed to know for sure!
Vaping is here to stay but be aware of the risks it can bring to your oral health. If you are thinking about switching to vaping to quit smoking, consult with your doctor and your dentist to see if it is a good option for you. Your oral health is important to maintaining your overall health and wellness. So, make sure you are making the best decision for your mouth. Are you looking for a dental plan? Take our quiz to see which plan is right for you!