One More Reason to Quit Smoking: Root Canals

Public service announcements and other campaigns barrage smokers with information, pleading for a change of heart. Perhaps you know that smoking increases your risk of oral cancer, gum disease, and cavities. Elizabeth Krall Kayle, professor of the department of health at Boston University’s Goldman School of Medicine, authored a study that might give smokers one more reason to quit.

Research Shows Smokers Need More Root Canals

Professor Kayle’s study spanned over 28 years, following 811 men since the late 1960’s. Her findings suggest men who smoke are more likely to have root canal treatments. The study involved taking X-rays of the men’s teeth every three years and assessing their continued smoking habits.

Of the 581 smokers and former smokers, 385 men had had root canals before, totaling 998 root canals. This means that some men had more than one root canal. The studies found that those who had smoked the longest had the most root canals, and those who had quit for over nine years had the same risk as lifetime non-smokers.

Avoiding Tooth Decay

Although root canals do not live up to the painful myth that follows the procedure, avoiding the need for restorative dental work like fillings should still be a top priority. Patients who have had dental work previously are more likely to have other dental issues like cavities. The best course of action is preventive dentistry and oral hygiene habits that clean away plaque and block tooth decay.

Preventive Dentistry in Lake Forest

If you are a smoker, consult Dr. Fondriest for thorough dental cleanings, and advice for improving your oral health. Contact our Lake Forest, IL, dental office at 847-234-0517. At Lake Forest Dental Arts, we can offer a wide range of dental treatments for patients from Grayslake, Barrington, Lake Forest, Winnetka, Highland Park, North Shore, and Chicago.

 

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