Teen Vaping and Oral Health
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Teen Vaping and Oral Health

A teenage girl vaping

The practice of using e-cigarettes (an electronic form of real cigarettes) is known as vaping. It has become much more popular in recent years, especially among teenagers. Many teens are convinced that smoking e-cigarettes are less harmful than traditional cigarettes. It’s important that you let your teens know that this isn’t the case!

Vaping and Gum Disease

E-cigarettes still contain nicotine. While vaping may still be new enough that conclusive long-term data is lacking, the same is not true for nicotine. Research has shown that nicotine inhibits blood flow to the gum tissue, masking symptoms of the disease while also creating a poor immune response. This means that your teen may be suffering from severe gum disease and not even show symptoms.

Nicotine and Dry Mouth

Nicotine can cause dry mouth, increasing your teen’s risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Saliva is meant to balance out oral bacteria and protect the teeth. When saliva production is inhibited, the soft tissues in the mouth are not getting the necessary blood flow to stay healthy. If your child vapes, it is important to make sure that they know to stay hydrated.

E-Cigarettes and Cancer

Lastly, studies are showing that there are more dangerous chemicals in e-cigarettes than previously thought. These chemicals damage the lungs when inhaled and have the potential to be carcinogenic. This increases your child’s risk for oral cancer.

Although vaping has become appealing to teens and is marketed as being safer than traditional cigarettes, the presence of nicotine makes these smoking devices a threat to your teen’s dental and overall health. If you are concerned about your teen’s vaping habit, please contact Little Smiles of Delaware. Our pediatric dental office is located in Delaware, Ohio.

Posted on May 11, 2020
Image Credit: © Dreamstime.com

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