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No Smoking Day 2020: Are you ready to kick the butt?

  • In the lead up to ‘No Smoking Day’ on 11 March 2020, Jasjit looks at the effect that smoking can have on your oral health.

    By dentalnegligence

What is National No Smoking Day?

The first ‘No Smoking Day’ was celebrated on Ash Wednesday in 1984. It has since grown to become a nationwide campaign to raise awareness of the harmful effects of smoking and is intended to help smokers “kick the butt”. Research conducted following the 2009 campaign showed that 1 in 10 smokers quit on ‘No Smoking Day’.

What are the effects of smoking?

Smoking is one of the biggest causes of death and illness in the UK and Ireland, with over 80,000 deaths reported each year. It has been suggested that one in two smokers will die from a smoking related disease. The effect that smoking has on your overall health is shocking as it not only affects your respiratory system but also your reproductive system and your skin.

Compared to those that don’t smoke, smokers are at an increased risk of the following:

  • Heart disease
  • Mouth, throat and oral cancer
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Gum disease
  • Lung damage
  • Vision problems
  • Fertility problems
  • Bronchitis
  • Unhealthy skin and hair.

I don’t smoke, am I still at risk?

Yes. Research suggests those exposed to second-hand smoke have an increased risk of developing respiratory infections and asthma.

What effect does smoking have on my oral health?

Cancer Research UK has reported that 60% of individuals with oral cancer are smokers which can result in:

  • Bad breath
  • Increased build up of plaque and tar
  • Discoloured teeth
  • Delayed healing process following dental treatment such as tooth extraction and periodontal treatment
  • Increased risk of developing gum disease

How do I spot oral cancer?

The symptoms of oral cancer vary but can include:

  • Difficulty when chewing or swallowing
  • Tender lumps found in the mouth, throat or lips
  • A lip or mouth sore that hasn’t healed for several weeks
  • A white or reddish patch on the inside of your mouth, tongue or gums
  • Persistent bad breath
  • Numbness in your mouth
  • Jaw pain
  • Persistent mouth pain.

If you have experienced any of these symptoms for several weeks please visit your GP.

If you have any concerns about the diagnosis or treatment of oral cancer that you have received from your dentist, or if you have any other potential dental negligence claim that you would like to discuss, then please do not hesitate to contact the dental negligence team.

Want to know more?

Call 0800 051 8069

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