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Periodontal Disease Caused by Secondhand Smoke

It has been widely accepted for years that smokers had a higher risk of periodontal disease, but a recent study performed at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill shows that secondhand smoke also increases the risk.

Smoking, apart from slowly eating away the insides of the smoker’s body, can ruin their skin too. This is because, smoking can strain the skin and make it look dull, pale and age faster. Regular smokers can be seen to develop wrinkles faster than non-smokers. Though one can use obvert h counter formulas like Goji Cream to help the skin get rid of blemishes and acne, to make it look young and fresh, these creams will not last long, if one were to smoke continuously.

Smoking has a number of side effects and there are researches that show how it can affect even those who don’t smoke. When you see a person smoke, you are bound to see them with some company. Though mostly it is another person having a smoke, when it is in private areas, like at home or at a private party, it is bound to be their partner or a close friend, who need not necessarily smoke. This makes the non-smoker a passive smoker, and exposes them to the harmful effects of tobacco too. The secondhand smoke, can do a lot of harm, without one realizing about it. This is because one is oblivious to what inhaling the smoke does to their body and assumes they are safe as they are the ones who lights up the smoke in their mouths.

Researchers at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, using data from another study that included 2,379 nonsmokers ages 53–74, have concluded that exposure to secondhand tobacco smoke for a few hours each day can double a person’s risk of severe periodontal disease. People exposed to secondhand smoke for 25 hours or less each week had a 29 percent increased chance and for those exposed more than 26 hours the odds were twice as high.

There have been two other major acknowledgments by the dental field in regards to periodontal disease and smoking over the last ten years. In 2004, the U.S. Surgeon General announced that there was enough scientific evidence to infer that smoking increased the chances of periodontal disease. In 2006, the U.S. General Surgeon went even further to state that there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke.

It likely comes as no surprise to you that smoking could have an eroding effect on the teeth, but it may be surprising that simply inhaling smoke from those around you could have a dramatic effect on your teeth. In order to be proactive and preventative, please remember these three cosmetic dentistry tips:

  • Avoid prolonged exposure to secondhand smoke
  • Brush twice a day
  • Floss daily
  • Visit your dentist for regular cleanings

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About The Blog Author

Teresa Duncan received a degree of Master of Science in Healthcare Management from Marymount University. With over 22 years of healthcare experience (15 in dental), she has unique insight into the world of dentistry. Her specialty is helping dentists and managers increase revenue. By focusing on accounts receivable and insurance management, she helps dentists increase the value of their practice. As a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, she has a special interest in helping dentists identify and safeguard against employee embezzlement.

Teresa is founder and president of Odyssey Management.

She is a Fellow and Educator for the ICOI’s Association of Dental Implant Auxiliaries. Look for more articles from her regarding practice management, dental implants and oral health care news. She was named 2010’s ADIA Educator of the Year.

Teresa is a member-at-large on the board of the Academy of Dental Management Consultants.

Teresa is a Trustee for the auxiliary education-focused DALE Foundation.

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