The pitchthis 2012 baseball season, baseball players, managers, and coaches can not carry tobacco tins or packages in their uniforms any time that patrons are in the ballpark. They also have been restricted from use of smokeless tobacco during any televised interviews or any events where they are in contact with fans. This includes team-sponsored events and autograph signings. This was accomplished by much lobbying by various senators and health groups. Although, they have not banned the use of chewing tobacco during games and events they have been able to make a step in the right direction by eliminating tins and packages. Smokeless tobacco can have many detrimental dental and overall health effects. Studies have found that between 60-78% of smokeless tobacco users have lesions in their mouths which may or may not be precancerous or cancerous. Besides the risk for oral cancer smokeless tobacco users often have an increased risk of cavities, receding gums and root surface exposure which can increase sensitivity to hot and cold. According to statistics provided by the organizations lobbying to remove chewing tobacco use in front of baseball fans, they found that “There has been a 36% increase in the use of smokeless tobacco by high school boys since 2003, with 15% of all high school boys using it. The major leaguers who use it during games “are providing a celebrity endorsement for these products” . By decreasing the exposure of our youths to smokeless tobacco, whether it be by the media or by their family and peers, we can help reduce their chances of beginning a harmful habit that can increase their risk for oral cancer. To learn more about this topic please follow this link]]>

fotolia_33570733_xs1-resized-600Smoking is not only bad for your heart and lungs but your mouth too. Here are the alarming statistics:

  • Smokers are three times more likely than non-smokers to lose all their teeth. This figure has not changed from a decade ago.
  • Smoking can result in periodontal gum disease, bad breath, staining of the tongue and teeth, delayed healing and complications with certain dental procedures, plaque build-up, and a diminished sense of taste and smell.
  • About 28,000 people are diagnosed with oral cancer a year and 7,200 die from oral cancer each year.
  • It has been reported by the Academy of General Dentistry that a one-pack-a-day smoking habit can cost you the loss of at least two teeth every 10 years. Smoking can also lead to seven times the risk of developing gum disease compared to non-smokers.
  • About eight out in ten people with mouth and throat cancers are tobacco users. On average, 40 percent of those with the disease will not survive more than five years after being diagnosed, as quoted by the American Dental Association.
  • According to the American Cancer Society, it is estimated that about 8 out of 10 oral cancers could be prevented by avoiding both tobacco and alcohol use. Many of the chemicals found in tobacco can damage DNA directly. Scientists are not sure whether alcohol directly damages DNA but they have shown that alcohol helps many DNA-damaging chemicals get into cells more easily. This may be why the combination of tobacco and alcohol damages DNA far more than tobacco alone.
Whether you’re a smoker or not, it is important to have regular cleanings and oral cancer screenings but if you smoke it’s even more crucial that your dentist monitor your periodontal health for signs of oral cancer.]]>