Are E-Cigarettes Causing Gum Disease?

Many people are under the impression that e-cigarettes are a healthier alternative to smoking, but that isn’t quite the case. The truth of the matter is that, although these alternatives to smoking are advertised as being harmless, we have no idea what they do to our bodies after long-term use. Not enough studies have been made or published to support them being either good or bad for us, but one recently published study has put forward some solid evidence stating that e-cigarettes might not be as harmless as we thought.

In a study produced in October, it was found that the vapour from these electric cigarettes could be causing serious damage to our oral health. When a human non-smoker was exposed to e-cigarette vapour it was found that their gums became inflamed and cell regeneration became impeded. This means that smoking with e-cigarettes in the long term will cause your gums to bleed and recede, exposing the sensitive root of your teeth. This condition can be quite painful. Your gums will often feel sore and painful while your teeth will be hyper sensitive because the root is exposed.  You’ll find that certain temperatures of food irritate your teeth and that brushing is painful.

While e-cigarettes don’t directly cause gum disease, they are capable of hiding some of the effects. It’s the nicotine in e-cigarettes that is able to hide the effects of gum disease from both you and your dentist, making it harder to catch and treat. This is because one of the main symptoms of gum disease is increased blood flow in the gums while nicotine suppresses the blood flow, making it look normal. Other problems that we can confirm about e-cigarettes are that they can cause bad breath by reducing saliva production in your mouth and can make you grind your teeth.

So, even though it hasn’t been absolutely confirmed that e-cigarettes aren’t dangerous, they are still harmful and can leave some long-term if not life-long damage to your mouth. If you are a non-smoker then you shouldn’t pick up e-cigarettes thinking that they’re safer then smoking. The only thing that’s actually safer than smoking is not smoking. While we haven’t seen e-cigarettes produce as harmful effects as tobacco does, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any effects at all and we have only just touched the surface of what e-cigarettes might do.

If you already use e-cigarettes or are using them to help you quit smoking, be careful about how frequently you use e-cigarettes. Quit as soon as you can and keep a close eye on your oral health. You must brush with a good quality electric toothbrush and use a mouthwash that promotes blood flow to the gums. You can find some products that do this in our list of best mouthwash. You should also see you dentist regularly and, when you can, inspect your gum line for periodontal pockets. These are pockets between your gum and teeth where the tooth has become detached from the gum around it. It is in these products were infections and gum disease can develop, so do not neglect to take charge of your oral health.