Electronic cigarettes have seen a rapid rise in popularity since their introduction in the market and have since remained one of the top alternatives to the traditional cigarette. Electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes are electronic devices that generate an aerosol that is then inhaled by the consumer. This aerosol contains distilled water, nicotine, flavoring agents, and a few other chemicals which although do not cause teeth discoloration, bad breath or plaque buildup, but can thwart the production of saliva.
Saliva is an extremely important element in the maintenance of our oral hygiene as it wipes out bacterial buildup in the mouth, food debris and any acidic content left behind. In case of saliva shortage, all these damaging elements will remain in the mouth and open door to further complications like cavities, cotton mouth and halitosis.
It is rather surprising to note that the potential oral health effects of cigarettes go unnoticed. A study published in 2014 showed the effects of e-cigs on oral health. A number of surveys were carried out where participants reported to having ‘throat and mouth dryness and irritation’ as one of the most common side effects.
Although electronic cigarettes are less likely to cause potential harm, like oral cancer and gum disease, they are still considered disadvantageous to your dental health. Research is still in progress about the impact of e-cigs on both oral and overall health, but present studies show that the hazards associated with them are still low in comparison with traditional cigarettes. In spite of this, the negative effects could be minimized to a good extent by employing the right product standards and regulation.
In conclusion, whatever cigarette alternative you are using, make sure to keep it in moderation. Also, it is a good idea to discuss your use of cigarette alternatives with your dentist so you can minimize the risk of dental health issues.