Vaping is a new alternative to smoking cigarettes. It has become incredibly popular due to the fact that it has been marketed as a “safer” substitute. Electronic cigarettes use a nicotine-enhanced, flavored liquid to deliver an aerosol vapor that can be inhaled, allowing people to gradually reduce their intake of nicotine and eventually quit. However, recent findings have determined that this alternative can create just as much havoc on your teeth and gums as smoking, if not more. Read on to learn four alarming facts about vaping from your dentist.
Nicotine From Vaping Can Still Lead to Gum Disease
Even though vaping juice contains less nicotine than cigarettes, it can still increase your risk of developing oral health problems. Nicotine is known to limit the blood flow to the gums and mouth, which can cause dry mouth and impede your ability to fight off dangerous infections and harmful oral bacteria. This can lead to a higher risk of gum disease, decay, and tooth loss. Even with nicotine-free vaping juices, the other ingredients found in them can still increase your risk of developing these problems.
Toxic Ingredients Found in Vaping Juice Can Affect Oral Tissues
A primary ingredient used in vaping juices is propylene glycol, which is an organic compound that’s colorless, viscous, and tastes faintly sweet. While it’s safe to eat and inhale, when it’s used orally, it can break down into acids that can erode tooth enamel and irritate the soft tissue in your mouth. Because propylene glycol also causes dry mouth, people who vape have an increased risk of harmful oral bacteria buildup, which leads to cavities and gum disease.
Vaping Juice Flavorings Help Bacteria Stick to Teeth
Vaping juices are so satisfying because they don’t just provide you with a nicotine-fix, but they also contain vegetable glycerin, which is a sticky liquid sweetener that adds an additional addictive element to using e-cigarettes. This substance also allows the bacteria that causes cavities, streptococcus mutans, with a strong adhesive to stick to the grooves of your teeth. The combination of harmful ingredients found in vape juices makes microbes four times as likely to stick to the teeth, causing double the growth of plaque.
Lithium Batteries Have Been Known to Cause Facial Damage
Although this fact about smoking e-cigarettes may seem a bit dramatic, it’s absolutely true and should be considered. Lithium batteries used by vapes with a “mechanical mod” have been reported exploding with misuse or improper care. In 2015 and 2017, 2,035 explosions caused by vaping batteries sent people to the emergency room. Most of these injuries caused permanent and drastic damage to the mouth and face.
If you’re tempted to use electronic cigarettes because the marketing has convinced you that it’s a safe option, think twice. While they may have certain benefits compared to smoking cigarettes, the best option for your health and safety is to completely quit using tobacco and nicotine products. That way, you can preserve your smile as well as your overall health.
About the Author
Dr. Greg Friedman has been helping his patients achieve healthy and beautiful smiles since 1990. He strives to provide everyone that walks through his doors with high-quality, thorough, and precise dental care that they can trust. By using the latest technology in his practice, he’s able to spot oral health problems earlier to treat them and keep them from causing permanent damage. For questions or to schedule a routine checkup and cleaning and learn how your oral habits are impacting the health of your teeth and gums, visit Mod Squad Dental’s website or call 858-547-0070.