Tobacco Use in Brooklyn, NY
One of the most common and most preventable causes of death in society is tobacco use. Smoking is not only socially undesirable but can result in serious health problems such as reduced tasting and smelling abilities, stained teeth, difficulty recovering from oral surgery, periodontal disease, and oral cancer. The American Dental Association (ADA) encourages all people to abstain from tobacco use, especially children and adolescents.
Nearly everyone who smokes picks up the habit as a child or teenager below the age of nineteen while those who never smoked as an adolescent are less likely to smoke as an adult. This is why the best way to prevent a lifelong habit of smoking is for parents to prevent their children from using tobacco as they grow up.
Smoking causes oral cancer
The biggest threat that tobacco has to human life is the ability to cause cancer. Oral cancer is difficult to detect in its early stages but can be detected and quickly treated after a professional oral cancer screening in Brooklyn, NY. If you or your child exhibits any of the following symptoms, schedule a trip to the dentist’s office immediately:
Without the proper detection and treatment, oral cancer can result in disfiguring surgery and death. Avoid this by abstaining from tobacco use and scheduling regular visits to the dentist in Brooklyn.
Is smokeless tobacco any safer?
No! It’s a common mistake that smokeless tobacco is a “safer” option than traditional cigarettes. The reality is that smokeless tobacco has been proven to give its users a greater dose of harmful chemicals and to be much more addictive. Smokeless tobacco also causes leucoplakias, or pre-cancerous lesions, in the mouth.
Using tobacco in any form is going to bring carcinogens, or cancer-causing agents, into direct contact with your oral region. A single snuff of tobacco contains the same amount of nicotine as sixty cigarettes!
What to do if your child uses tobacco?
Tobacco use is common in adolescents, which can make preventing your child from using it a challenge. The first step to preventing your child from getting addicted is to talk to them about the dangers of tobacco.
Being brought face-to-face with the real effects of prolonged tobacco use is the best way to prevent this habit from forming our continuing. Either you or your child’s dentist should have this discussion with them.
Second, stay away from tobacco yourself to set a good example. Children of non-smokers are less likely to smoke themselves. Third, be involved in your child’s life and stay alert to any signs of tobacco use. For uncooperative children, dentists can perform tobacco screenings at the dental office to see whether tobacco is being used and what its effects have been on the body.
If you have questions or concerns about tobacco use during childhood and adolescence, contact our Brooklyn dental office.