It’s well known that smoking cigarettes can cause permanent damage to your teeth and gums. With a new, emerging vaping trend surfacing, especially with younger folks, it’s important to ask “what does vaping do to your teeth and mouth and is it bad for you?”
There is a massive e-cigarette trend taking our country by storm that is being regarded as a healthier and safer alternative to cigarette use. Although that is believable at first thought, as you aren’t inhaling the traditional tar and other contaminants that are found in cigarettes, vaping is by no means safer to use. Our blog post today will break down for you the reasons for this and what vaping really is.
What Is Vaping?
Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling the aerosol, often referred to as vapor, which is produced by an e-cigarette or similar device. The term is used because e-cigarettes do not produce tobacco smoke, but rather an aerosol, often mistaken for water vapor, that actually consists of fine particles.
The e-liquid in vaporizer products usually contains a propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin-based liquid with nicotine, flavoring and other chemicals and metals, but not tobacco. Many of these particles that are inhaled contain varying amounts of toxic chemicals, which have been linked to cancer, as well as respiratory and heart disease. To say that vaping is a healthier choice than cigarette smoking is, should be reconsidered. As the number of vaping related illnesses continue to increase, we also need to consider what type of effect this has on our oral health too.
Does Vape Juice Damage Teeth?
The primary ingredient in vaping, propylene glycol, is commonly found in liquid sweeteners and even sodas. Its pleasantly sweet taste is desirable, but that same sweet taste actually breaks down into acetic acid, lactic acid, and propionaldehyde. Those three ingredients can actually break down tooth enamel and negatively impact the soft tissues in your mouth as well.
Glycerin, which is another main ingredient in vape juice, along with added flavorings, have a similar effect on your teeth. Although glycerin is an odorless and colorless substance, it can cause microbes to latch onto tooth enamel and cause breakdown to occur. In short: Vaping can cause cavity-causing bacteria to stick to the surface of your teeth and cause unrepairable damage.
Regarding your gum tissue; the effects of nicotine on gum tissue are very well documented. Some of the vape juice cartridges are around 5% nicotine which, after smoking, is the equivalent to a pack of cigarettes. This is also not accounting for the negative effects the other ingredients in vape juice may have on your gums, but vaping simply has not been around long enough to have definitive proof one way or the other. We do know that nicotine decreases blood flow to the gum tissue which puts vapers at a significantly higher risk of developing gum disease.
Come See A Dentist
In summary, the evidence is stacked against vaping when trying to make the argument that it’s at all healthier than cigarette usage. It’s important to focus on trying to quit vaping to pave the way to a healthier lifestyle and don’t forget to get some help from your dentist as well. Our office can provide a thorough examination of your mouth and look for any abstract lesions or places of concern to get you on the path toward a vape-free mouth. Give us a call today or schedule an appointment online via our website.