As the Tweet above says – there has been a lot of discussion about whether vaping has impact on the health of teeth and gums?

What triggered this conversation?

teeth smoking

I am not sure if I am honest but some of the origin of the latest spat appears to be from The Times article – Elf Bars and Me, I’m a vaping addict so will I get gum disease?

I did get to read this and it seemed to be utter horseshit, but I can’t revisit it as it’s behind a paywall!

Another catalyst may have been this statement from the BDA (British Dental Association) in response to the Khan Review!

“We accept the harms from vaping are less than from smoking. However, there have been recent suggestions linking disposable vapes to gum disease. Epidemiological studies also highlight concerns over oral dryness, irritation, and gum diseases.

Mick Armstrong, Chair of the British Dental Association’s Health and Science Committee said: “The risks of long-term oral and general health problems from e-cigarettes are frankly an unknown. With products that are so new, officials must keep an eye on emerging evidence, particularly given high uptake among young people.”

As you can imagine there has been some backlash – including this tweet from Linda Bauld who is a Professor of Public Health at Edinburgh University and Chief Social Policy advisor to the Scottish Government.

Here is the transcript of the letter Dr Richard Holliday (Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Restorative Dentistry, Specialist in Periodontics) and Professor Elaine McColl (Professor of Health Service Research at Newcastle University) sent to The Times Newspaper.

“Sir, The article “Elf bars and me: I’m a vaping addict, so will I get gum disease?” (Times June 8th) suggests that the use of e-cigarettes (and specifically nicotine) leads to Gum disease, but this does not represent the scientific evidence in this field. Tobacco smoking is a major cause of oral diseases including Periodontal (Gum) disease. Smoke and not Nicotine is responsible for these harms, although this often gets confused.

Indeed oral nicotine, such as Gum, has been used without concern for decades. Nicotine use does not lead to Gum disease. In the case of bleeding gums, it is normal for smokers to get this when they quit; if this happens those affected should see their dental team for a full examination.

Finally smokers who are thinking about switching to an e-cigarette should bear in mind that this is a great move for their general and oral health”

mic drop

I think that is called a “Mic Drop”

IVBTA Response

The IBVTA (Independent British Vape Trade Association) have responded in their article here – IBVTA commentary on article linking gum disease to vaping.

My name is Michelle - I am 46 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again a few years ago and have started to move up in the shiny shiny gadget department and love vaping! I have finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod!

1 COMMENT

  1. Thanks for this article.
    I quit smoking and started vaping in February 2022. Two months later, I got serious gum issues.
    The specialists who helped me stopping the gum destruction confirmed that the problem was due to the fact that I got no dental cleaning just before quitting tobacco. This is an info which should be widely shared, but (at least in France) this info is missing from most of the “Tobacco stoppage assistance” campaigns.

    But, the specialists also confirmed me that the vape was slowing down my gum “recovery” process (gum which has been destroyed won’t come back, but remaining gum is not fully strengthened yet) or cause additional harm as long as this process was not fully done – I can confirm this as I send most of the vapor on the right side of my mouth, and my gum is still bleeding on this side only. The warmer the vape temperature, the more bleeding I get.

    Based on this experience I would recommend to check if your teeth are perfectly clean before quitting tobacco (as said in this article) but also to check whether your gum is fragile before starting to vape – and be very cautious. Vaping may not cause serious issues to start, but it is clearly slowing the recovery process when you face a gum issue.

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