The Ageing Effects Of Smoking

How smoking affects your facial features and your teeth, prematurely aging you.

We have covered in a previous blog post, the dangers to oral health caused by smoking, with the increased risk of oral cancers and advanced gum disease.

Although these issue do, quite rightly, grab the headlines, there is another issue which long term smokers have to face, and that is the way that it affects their appearance.

Although it may once have been ‘cool’ to smoke, and there is little doubt that in earlier times, the sight of Bogart and Bacall smoking could be classed as ‘alluring’, few would argue that to be the case these days. With a heightened awareness of the damage that smoking causes, more and more people are attempting to stop.

At the Confidental Clinic in Clapham, we see the effects on oral health of smokers on a daily basis. Our facial aesthetics team also see the effect that it has on the patient’s appearance in general.

‘Ugly’ teeth

We don’t really like to use the term ‘ugly’, but it is often an appropriate term where someone has smoked for a long period of time. From a dental perspective, there are a number of visual symptoms which can cause a smoker to have an unattractive smile.

Stained teeth – Whilst a degree of discolouration is not uncommon in older patients, heavy smoker’s teeth are often very badly discoloured. This is largely from the quantity of tar that has passed through their teeth over the years, sticking in the microscopic pits that many patients have in the surface enamel. It is unlikely that a teeth whitening procedure would be able to reverse this discolouration and dental veneers may prove to be the most effective method to restore them.

Receding gums – As we mentioned earlier, smoking increases the risk of gum disease and one effect of this can be to cause the gums to recede. When this happens, the yellow part of the tooth that is usually hidden by the gum, appears. This has a twofold effect – firstly exposing this non white part of the tooth, but also causing the tooth to appear to be longer, hence the saying of someone who is older being ‘long in the tooth’.

Crooked and missing teeth – Another side effect of smoking is that it can cause damage to the bone which hold the teeth in place. In addition to the risk of tooth loss this may cause, it can cause the teeth to move around, giving them a crooked appearance. Both crooked and missing teeth can obviously really detract from an otherwise pleasant smile.

Ageing skin

Look at any long term smoker and you will nearly always see that their skin is wrinkled and lines appear in numerous parts of their faces at a premature age. This may be caused by a combination of the chemicals in tobacco products as well as the dehydrating effect of smoking on the skin. Whilst our Clapham facial aesthetics treatments may help to restore these features through the use of anti wrinkle treatments and dermal fillers, few would argue that it is better to prevent these effects in the first place.

If you are unhappy with the way that smoking has affected your teeth or skin, why not call the Confidental Clinic in Clapham to see what we can do to help you restore your appearance. Call us today on 020 7801 9060 to arrange a consultation.