Effects of Alcohol and Smoking on Oral Health

Effects of Alcohol and Smoking on Oral Health

Alcohol and smoking are harmful to one's health and enhance one's risk of developing mouth cancer. Smokers are at an increased risk of getting gum disease and experiencing difficulties following oral surgery. Consuming an excessive amount of alcohol raises the quantity of acid in the mouth. Additionally, this results in tooth decay, enamel loss, and the production of cavities. Cigarette smoking and alcohol use include a high concentration of chemicals that deteriorate gingival tissue and raise the risk of mouth cancer. Continue reading the article to learn more about smoking and alcohol's detrimental impacts on oral health. 

Smoking and Oral Health: 

Smoking impairs the immune system and makes gum disease more difficult to treat. Regardless of the type, tobacco use increases the chance of developing gum disease. A smoker's chance of developing gum disease is double that of a non-smoker. Additionally, therapy for such illnesses is ineffective among smokers. This is because the oxygen level in a smoker's circulation is low, making it harder for the gums to recover effectively. 

Smoking decreases saliva production and impairs cell function. The Oral Cancer Foundation reports that smoking contributes to the annual development of oral cancer among smokers. Ninety percent of people with oral cancer are likely cigarette smokers. Smokers have a sixfold increased risk of developing oral cancer compared to non-smokers. The following are some of the most common issues affecting smokers' dental health: 

Alcohol and Oral Health: 

Alcohol causes dryness in the mouth by decreasing the production of saliva. It causes atrophy of the salivary glands and inhibits ADH production (Adipic acid dihydrazide). This chemical is responsible for regulating the amount of urine excreted from the body. Drinking alcohol causes the kidneys to expel more water than usual, and as a result, the body gets dehydrated. When the body gets dehydrated, many people suffer from a condition known as xerostomia (dry mouth).  

Dry mouth increases the prevalence of gum disease or periodontitis. A study in 2015 found that alcohol has a negative and proportional impact on dental health. It further stated that alcohol users had more gum bleeding than non-smokers and their condition worsened with increased consumption. Alcohol users have an increased likelihood of oral health risks. For instance, alcohol addiction leads to higher plaque levels, ruining the teeth. It also leads to tooth loss, tooth erosion, tooth decay, oral cancer, problems with the esophagus, receding gums, etc.  


A single cigarette or sip of alcohol can do a lot of harm to your oral health. Maintaining a healthy body is essential to maintaining appropriate oral hygiene. To kick the habit of smoking or drinking, you'll need to put in the time and effort. However, if you smoke or consume alcohol but are willing to quit, you must visit your dentist to restore your oral health. 

Contact your Fairfield dentist, Dr. Cheng Zhu, at Freedom Family Sedation Dentistry today to learn more about tooth oral health.


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*This media/content or any other on this website does not prescribe, recommend, or prevent any treatment or procedure. Therefore, we highly recommend that you get the advice of a qualified dentist or other medical practitioners regarding your specific dental condition* 

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