New Study Links Cannabis to Premature Tooth Loss

  • By Joel Snyder
  • 13 Sep, 2016

A new study has linked prolonged cannabis use to premature tooth loss.

The research, which was carried out by a team in Arizona, found that people who smoked marijuana over a prolonged period of time had a higher risk of gum disease. More than 1,000 people were involved in the study, which suggested that smoking the substance for up to 20 years could cause tooth loss by the age of 30.

Gum disease is most commonly identified in middle-aged people and is usually linked to poor oral hygiene. This study found that smoking marijuana increases the chances of developing gum disease earlier in life, contributing to premature tooth loss.

A team of researchers from Arizona State University found that cannabis was associated with poor oral health. The team analysed data from people born in New Zealand between 1972 and 1973. They performed health checks on the participants, who were aged up to 38. More than 50 percent were men.

Dr Madeline Meier said the findings of the study have significant implications. This particular project was commissioned to determine the relationship between recreational cannabis use and health problems in later life. The study suggests that while prolonged cannabis use may not be associated with specific systematic illnesses, it did increase the risk of periodontal disease, the advanced form of gum disease. Among this group of participants, a quarter had established gum disease.

Dr Meier also stressed that it was important to consider the finding alongside other studies concerned with the health implications of cannabis use. Previous projects have linked marijuana use to respiratory illnesses, mental health conditions, cancer and heart attacks.

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Fabulous Smiles Tips and News

By Jennifer Lotfy 12 Nov, 2017

From seeing the spooky forceps and needles to even smelling dental compounds, 5-8% of patients refuse to seek dental care all together and 20% of patients will only go to the dentist when necessary.

I think I have odontophobia. What can I do to prevent panic during visits?

  1. Easier said than done - practice positive self-talk! Tell yourself “YOU CAN DO IT!”

  2. Make sure to remind yourself “everything WILL be okay.” Your dentist is a professional and is someone you can trust.

  3. Don’t be nervous - speak up to your dentist. Let him/her know when you’re having a rough time. Listening to your concerns face-to-face helps both sides - you and your dentist. Your dentist can help make an ideal and reasonable commitment that makes you feel comfortable because dental health is SO important! Knowledge is power!

  4. Download your favorite podcast, album, or playlist before heading to the office. Distract your thoughts and link the experience to something you ENJOY.

  5. Don’t forget headphones! Your dentist will not be upset if you put your headphones in to distract your thoughts.

  6. Take deep breaths! Think about pleasant experiences in your life to stay calm.

  7. Here at Fabulous Smiles, we have a therapy dog named Bailey that will ease any panic you might have.

By Jennifer Lotfy 07 Nov, 2017
 This easy to read chart applies for all ages - to fight bad breath, gum disease, and cavities.
By Katharine Jones 29 Sep, 2017

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By Joel Snyder 14 Sep, 2017
We believe that a Holistic approach to dentistry is about caring for the individual and not just what insurance recommends. The anxiety of going to the dentist is more the fear of neglect and infrequent visits, causing compounding problems and escalating cost. That is why this approach works, saving time and money, fear and anxiety, inconvenient appointments, and repeated office visits.

The Holistic approach looks at the entire person, your environment, and more importantly your health! Many health related issues can cause dental problems. Cancer treatments , pharmaceuticals, diabetes, and other reactive side effects from medial treatments (and lack of treatments) all contribute to oral health. Knowing more about the person and creating a treatment plan that fits their lifestyle is key to maintaining good oral health. The opposite can also be true, as bad oral care leads to other health related complications and infections.

Even healthy people need to maintain regular checks and monitoring. Cosmetic treatments, sealing of tooth enamel and cavity prevention, even treating of minor gum disease can improve overall lasting health. Allow yourself to be treated based on your lifestyle, and not to be ruled by insurance and corporate plans. The biggest benefits are lasting health and reducing the overall financial exposure.

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