HOW DRUG ABUSE AND ADDICTION DAMAGE YOUR DENTAL HEALTH
- December 13, 2018
Quite often, when we consider how toxic drugs affect the body, we often think about more obvious areas including the digestive, cardiovascular, neurological, and hematological (blood) systems. Perhaps you might even consider how drugs can ruin your complexion and create dry, flaky hair and skin. Maybe you also think about the transmission of dangerous viruses like HIV and hepatitis. However, a few of you might still consider how drugs can ruin another one of your most important features, one that is an ideal component for attracting mister or miss right: your smile. Research and experience indicate that drugs can wreak havoc on your teeth and gums (and even your tongue), and some of the results can be nothing short of horrifying. Let’s take a closer look at how drug abuse and addiction damage your dental hygiene and health.
Neglecting Your Pearly Whites
One of the major causes of dental problems is the simple fact that drug addicts do not practice proper oral hygiene. As they spend a lot of time seeking out their next purchase, these people will forget to brush their teeth, floss between their gums, and clean their tongues. As a result, their mouth will start to deteriorate (in some cases, literally).
Here are some ways that addictive drugs harm their mouths:
- Dry mouth (leading to acid buildup, which destroys enamel)
- Acid reflux (damages enamel and soft tissue)
- Grinding teeth
- Improper blood flow to the tongue, gums, and teeth roots
- Infected mouth ulcers and abscesses
- Lack of hygiene (altogether)
- Poor nutrition (e.g. lack of calcium and vitamins)
- Massive intake of sugars and carbs (causing cavities)
Which Drugs Affect Teeth the Most?
So, which drugs hurt the dental system the most? Here are a few examples:
- Cocaine: Although this stimulant affects the nasal cartilage and sinuses, cocaine is highly acidic and can wreak havoc on enamel. Crack cocaine, in particular, is more dangerous due to the simple fact it is smoked.
- Crystal Meth: This is an obvious contender. Everyone has heard of the term “meth mouth,” where a meth user’s teeth start to rot out of their head. Ultimately, this condition stems from meth’s ability to shrink blood vessels and wreak havoc on the salivary glands, resulting in dry mouth, acid buildup, and poor circulation.
- Club Drugs: Substances like amphetamines and MDMA cause overloads of excitement and pleasure, which can result in teeth grinding and acid buildup.
- Opioids: Interestingly, opioids like heroin make people crave sugary foods and drinks on a ridiculous level, resulting in severe cavities and rotting.
- Marijuana: While the little green plant is beneficial, smoking marijuana can result in mouth cancer and other diseases (in the same essence as tobacco).
Always remember that drugs do not have control over your life. You do. Are you suffering from a substance use disorder or a severe form of addiction? Do you have a friend or family member suffering from one or more of these debilitating illnesses? If you do, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our counselors and healthcare experts are ready to walk you through every step of the detox and withdrawal process and rehabilitation and guide you towards living a happier, healthier, and freer lifestyle. While the road to recovery might not be an easy road to travel, we promise to help you every step of the way. Take the first step to stay fit, healthy, and safe.
The time for you to take back control of your life is now. If you are interested in one of our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how to overcome your drug abuse or addiction troubles today.