One of the worst possible habits you could have that drastically affects your oral health is smoking. Not only does smoking cause bad breath and severe tooth discoloration, but it also slows your body’s ability to naturally heal itself. As a consequence, smokers are more at risk for dangerous oral conditions such as tooth decay and gum disease. Worse yet, for our patients who are looking to restore missing teeth with dental implants, smoking can actually lower the chances of your treatment succeeding. Today, Dr. Munira Lokhandwala is blogging from Fremont, CA to talk about the many ways in which smoking can put your dental implant treatment at risk.
During the dental implant procedure, an implant fixture is placed along the jawbone. As it heals following this placement, a process called osseointegration works to assimilate the implant fixture into your oral anatomy. However, every now and then, this process is prevented by an inflammation of the tissue directly around the fixture. This is called peri-implantitis and, while it can happen to any patient, it is much more common of an occurrence among patients who smoke.
Not only can smoking increase your chances of peri-implantitis, but it also does many other things that can prevent your implants from succeeding. For instance, because smoking slows the circulation of blood in your body, it makes it much more difficult for your body to heal itself, which can make it harder for your implant fixture to heal properly. It is also true that the nicotine in cigarettes can damage the tissues that make up your jaw, teeth, gums, and facial muscles. This damage can actually increase the chances of you losing even more teeth, leaving you with more missing teeth that you may not be able to replace due to your habit affecting the implant process.
If you smoke and are currently suffering from a missing tooth, then your habit may actually end up resulting in facial deformation. The reason for this is that, when you lose a tooth, your jawbone begins to deteriorate. This process is only exacerbated by the effects of smoking cigarettes. This deterioration can end up causing your face to take on a sunken appearance and the skin around your jawline may begin to prematurely wrinkle. If your jawbone deteriorates too far, it will be much more difficult to restore your missing teeth with dental implants and you may require extensive bone grafting before you will be able to move forward with the implant process.
As you can see, smoking can not only cost you your teeth, but it can make it much harder for you to replace those missing teeth. While we have had plenty of successes placing dental implants in patients who smoke, the simple fact is that the chances of the treatment failing are much higher for these patients than they are for our patients who don’t smoke. If you would like to learn more about how smoking affects the dental implant procedure and why you should consider giving up the habit, we encourage you to contact us and schedule a no-obligation consultation with Dr. Munira Lokhandwala, Dr. Azadeh Hosseini, or Dr. Priya Beedu today.
Dr. Munira Lokhandwala
38350 Fremont Blvd., Suite 103
Fremont, CA 94536
Monday: 9AM – 6PM
Tuesday: 9AM – 6PM
Wednesday: 9AM – 6PM
Thursday: 9AM – 6PM
Friday: 9AM – 6PM
Saturday: 9AM – 5PM