Study shows switching to vaping offers benefits for teeth, gums, oral health
While many people have anxiety as a visit to the dentist’s office approaches, smokers tend to become a bit more overstressed than most. It’s very common for anyone to begin imagining painful interactions with sharp, pointed-instruments as the dentist starts probing the teeth and gums for potential cavities and gum disease. But smokers almost surely face another ominous event – that awkward, uncomfortable conversation with the dentist about the dangers of smoking on oral health.
The ugly, yellow-stained teeth is a very obvious negative side effect that many smokers have already come to terms with, but they tend to forget the fact that smoking can also lead to a whole variety of more severe medical disorders. Dentists often remind their smoking patients over and over again that combustible tobacco is well-documented as a leading cause of gingivitis and other periodontal disease, plaque buildup, canker sores, bad breath, oral cancer, respiratory disorders, and even tooth loss.
Smokers who switching to vaping experience vast improvements in overall oral health
With the rise in popularity in vaping in recent years, both the medical and dentistry communities have found themselves at a considerable professional disadvantage. Vaping has become so popular so quickly that reputable research by qualified experts is severely lacking. One group of scientists from Italy’s Research Institute Tecnologica has decided to conduct a series of studies focused solely on vaping’s effects on oral health. The result is a peer-reviewed research paper entitled Crosstalk between oral and general health status in e-smokers and published via the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health (NCBI).
“Our study was aimed to assess the variations of oral and general health status in a population of randomized smokers who switched to e-cigarette. Particular attention has been paid to the periodontal health status, by analyzing the plaque index (PI) and periodontal bleeding index (BI). Furthermore, we provided to the enrolled patients a self-assessment questionnaire to evaluate the awareness of patients involved in this study about the changes in their general health status, induced by the switching from combustible cigarette to e-cigarette.”
The Italian scientists began by soliciting a group of 350 participates for the study. All participants were smokers who had agreed to make the switch to vaping for a period of 120-days. As one might expect, not all participants successfully made the transition. Only 110 out of the original 350 remained at the end of the clinical trial.
- The 350 original participants were categorized into two groups.
- Category 1 = Regular smokers of ten years or less
- Category 2 = Regular smokers of over ten years
- Throughout the 120-day trial, the scientists conducted detailed, periodic oral examinations while monitoring various biomarkers including:
- Factors and measurements related to bleeding gums syndrome
- Plaque index levels
- Other deviations in oral health, such as gum disease diagnoses, cavities, and effects on the respiratory-related issues.
- After the 120-day trial was complete, 92 percent of Category 1 participants experienced zero measurable plaque levels (on a scale of 0-3) compared to 87 percent of Category 2 members.
- Before the onset of the 120-day trial, 61 percent of Category 1 and 65 percent of Category 2 patients experienced varying issues with bleeding gum syndrome. By the end of the trail, 82 percent of Category One and 98 percent of Category Two participants showed no indications of bleeding gums disease whatsoever.
- 78 percent of participants reported tremendous improvements in respiratory health.
- Another 80 percent reported positive changes in their senses of taste and smell.
- And 71 percent rated their overall general health was either “better” or “quite better” after the 120-trial.
This is just a brief overview of the many findings published in the final document. While the scientists also note that more research is needed to definitively prove that vaping has no adverse health effects on oral health, they also confirm that switching to vaping substantially reduces the associated health risks. While nothing these days is 100 percent risk-free, vaping seems to offer smokers substantial improvements in oral health on a variety of issues and in as little as 3-months, according to the Italian study.