Ever since e-cigarettes were introduced onto the market there has been an uptick in people quitting regular cigarettes and switching to the supposedly healthier alternative of electronic cigarettes. And, while some of the benefits may appear obvious, the question remains, is vaping bad for your teeth and oral health? In this blog, we’ll get to the bottom of this debate and find out if you’d be better off quitting vaping altogether.
Reasons why vaping is bad for your teeth
While e-cigarettes might be a good way to cut down on smoking normal cigarettes and reduce your chance of developing other health risks associated with smoking, the same can’t be true when it comes to oral health. So let’s take a look at the top reasons why vaping is bad for your oral health.
Nicotine causes gum disease
Electronic cigarettes don’t have tobacco, but most contain nicotine. Nicotine is a vasoconstrictor, meaning it constricts your blood vessels and decreases blood flow to your body’s tissues. With limited blood flow to the gum tissue, the risk of tissue death and gum recession is heightened.
Further, the reduction in blood flow may mask symptoms of gum disease such as bleeding gums or gum inflammation. Without detection and intervention, gum disease can advance considerably, eventually destroying the bone and tissues holding the teeth in place leading to irreversible damage and tooth loss.
Propylene Glycol is harmful to enamel
Propylene Glycol or PG as it is more commonly known is one of the main ingredients in electronic cigarette liquid. While PG is completely safe to eat, when it is taken orally it breaks down into acids that damage the enamel of your teeth. In addition to damaging the enamel, PG also causes dry mouth and reduces the saliva levels in your mouth which helps to protect your teeth.
Vegetable Glycerine helps bacteria stick to teeth
While PG softens your tooths enamel, vegetable glycerine (VG) causes bacteria to stick to your teeth with four times as many microbes sticking to your teeth while vaping. VG is a carrier for flavourings which also often erode and reduce the hardness of your teeth’s enamel. When combined together VG, PG and Nicotine work together to cause damage to your teeth that could even lead to tooth loss.
How to reduce oral health problems from vaping
As you can see vaping and e-cigarettes are indeed bad for your oral health. Quitting the habit is the only way to reduce the impact but until you succeed these are the things you can do to reduce the risk of dental issues caused by vaping:
- Choose Nicotine free e-liquids
- Floss your teeth every day
- Brush your teeth at least 2 times a day and wait 20 minutes after vaping
- Drink plenty of water after vaping rather than sugary drinks
- Book regular dental check ups