It is well known that smokers have bad teeth. They get “nicotine stains,” people say, turning their teeth from bright white to opaque yellowish-brown. In the face of such comments, most Vapers rightly point out that nicotine in pure form is virtually colorless. Obviously, the problem of not smoking teeth is not just nicotine but also tar. But are we right? Recent studies on this topic have suggested that Vaping is a potential problem, and while they are far from showing dental problems in the real world, this is a sign that there may be problems in the future. Here is a summary of what we know about Vaping and teeth so far, the role of nicotine and what we can do to minimize the risks.
How Does Smoking Affect The Teeth?
To understand the potential risks of Vaping your teeth, it is useful to learn a little more about how smoking causes oral health problems. Although there are many differences between the two:
- The inhalation of tar-containing smoke differs greatly from the inhalation of liquid droplets
- Vapors and smokers are exposed to nicotine and other chemicals in the same way
In smokers, dental problems are more common than those who never smoke or are ex-smokers. For example, current smokers are four times more likely to have bad oral health than people who have never smoked and are twice as likely to have three or more oral health problems. Smoking affects your oral health in various ways, from yellow-brown to bad breath, leading to more serious oral health problems such as gum disease (periodontitis) and oral cancer. Smokers also have more tartar than non-smokers, which is a hardened plaque form, also known as calculus. There are other effects of smoking that also cause problems in the teeth. For example, smoking affects the immune system and affects your mouth’s ability to heal itself, which can aggravate other problems caused by smoking.
Smoking and Gum Disease
Gum disease is one of the most common dental problems in the UK and around the world. Smokers smoke twice as often as non-smokers. It is an infection of the gums and bone that surrounds the teeth, which over time causes the breakdown of tissues and bones and can lead to the loss of teeth. It is caused by plaque, which is the name of a mixture of saliva and bacteria in the mouth. In addition to causing gum irritation and inflammation that is characteristic of gum disease, the plaque also affects the teeth directly and causes tooth decay.
When you eat foods that contain a lot of sugar or starch, bacteria treat the carbohydrates as an energy source. This process produces acid as a by-product. If you do not keep your teeth clean, this acid eventually touches the surface of your tooth and causes tooth decay. But the plaque contains many different bacteria, and some of them also directly irritate your gums. So while one of the consequences of plaque buildup is more relevant to gum disease, both teeth and smoker issues are more likely to have consequences than non-smokers. The effects of smoking on your immune system mean that if a smoker gets an infection in the gums as a result of plaque buildup, your body is less likely to be able to fight it. In addition, if plaque buildup causes damage, the influence of smoking on healing also makes gum healing more difficult.
Over time, if gum disease remains untreated, they can begin to open spaces between the gums and teeth. This problem worsens when the tissue is destroyed and the teeth eventually loosen or even fall out. In general, smokers are twice as likely to have the periodontal disease as non-smokers, and the risk is higher for those who smoke more and smoke longer. Also, the problem is less responsive when it is processed.
Vape and Teeth Research
First, there have been studies that specifically analyze how vaporization affects teeth. However, these studies have mainly taken the form of cell culture studies. They are known as “in vitro” (literally “glass”) studies, and although they are useful to understand the biological mechanisms that underlie the potential health effects of steaming (and other exposures, drugs, and almost anything), one limited form of proof. The fact that something affects a group of cells in one culture does not mean that it will have the same effect on a real human body.
Against this backdrop, research on Vaping and its teeth is summarized in a March 2017 review article: The authors discuss the evidence for gum disease, which includes cell culture studies that show that fluids have deleterious effects on cells. Ligaments and connective tissue at dinner. The aldehydes contained in the e-cigarette vapor can have an effect on the proteins and cause damage to the DNA. All of these effects could theoretically lead to periodontal disease in Vapers.
Nicotine also has the potential to cause problems in teeth, although this is in turn based on cellular studies and evidence from people who smoke tobacco. The authors argue that Vaping could lead to a change in healing. But the truth is that for the moment, we do not have much specific evidence about Vaping, and much of the above is ultimately speculation. This is a speculation based on mechanistic studies of how nicotine interacts with the cells of the mouth so that we cannot completely ignore it, but the evidence we have so far cannot say much about what will happen in practice.
Dehydration and Teeth: Will Vaping Affect Our Teeth Indirectly?
When it comes to nicotine, the evidence we’ve made so far suggests that there is little to worry about, and cell studies that deal directly with vaporizing are hard to draw firm conclusions without further evidence. But these are not the only ways Vaping can affect teeth and oral health. One thing that most Vapers know is that Vaping can dehydrate you. Both PG and VG are hygroscopic, i.e. they absorb moisture from their immediate environment. Therefore, it is very common to have a dry mouth after Vaping. Your mouth is in constant contact with PG and VG, and most Vapers have become accustomed to drinking more than usual. The question is: is this constant dehydration a risk to your teeth?
There is an interesting research about the possible link between mild dehydration and dental problems, and in general, there is no direct evidence of a connection. However, there are many indirect pieces of evidence and suggestive results that indicate potential problems. This is reduced to your saliva. The literal washing of the teeth during the movement in the mouth contains ions that neutralize the acids in your diet, contain calcium and phosphate that can reverse the action of acids on your teeth and contain proteins that also interact with the molecules teeth. Saliva seems to be a major factor in maintaining oral health. If dehydration – due to fumes or other – causes a reduction in saliva production, it could have a dental effect on the teeth and make cavitations and other problems more likely.
The research indicates that there are many variables to consider that make it difficult to draw firm conclusions, but the authors write:
“The relationship between dehydration and dental disease has not been directly demonstrated, although there is considerable evidence to suggest that such a relationship exists.”
Tips To Take Care of Your Teeth Like a Vapor
The risk potential is far from being true, but it is clear that there are some simple steps you can take to reduce the risk of dental health problems from Vaping.
This is important to any vampire anyway, but given the potential dehydration-related risks, it’s especially important for your teeth. I always keep a bottle of water with me, but whatever you do, make sure you fight the dry mouth with lots of fluids.
Vape Less Frequently With High Nicotine Juice
An idea made by Dr. Farsalinos came (more generally about reducing the risk of vaporization) is that less frequent steaming with a higher nicotine juice is safer than steam with a low nicotine content. The same applies to your teeth: Drainage is connected to PG and VG. The less you inhale, the lower the effect. If theories about the role of nicotine in gum disease actually apply, increasing intake would not be ideal, but in general, nicotine does not seem to be an important factor.
Pay More Attention To Your Teeth And Brush Your Teeth
Although some Vapors may have problems, it is obvious that most of us had no problems. The explanation for this is probably that many Vapers will take care of their teeth. Brush at least twice a day to minimize risks and monitor possible problems. If you notice a problem, go to the dentist and solve the problem. The good news is that all this is pretty easy, and apart from the second suggestion, you’re probably going to do anything you need anyway. However, if you start to notice problems or if you feel that your teeth are getting worse, it is a good idea to take steps to reduce dehydration and to pay more attention to your teeth, in addition to seeing your dentist.