In the last few years many people have made the switch from smoking traditional cigarettes to vaping e-cigarettes. Most make the switch to help curve their tobacco and nicotine addictions. Smoking cigarettes has several health risks, so people wonder about the vaping effects on health since it is the new alternative way to ingest nicotine. The worst part about cigarette smoking is secondhand smoke which affects non-smokers who are in the same general area.
We are specifically going to discuss vaping and oral hygiene, and the many questions vapers may have like “does vaping stain teeth?” or “does vaping hurt your teeth?". We are here to help and answer all your questions on the vaping effects on teeth!
The Effects of Smoking on your Teeth
So what does smoking do to your teeth? According to the American Dental Association, tar and nicotine has several effects on dental health.  Some of the smoking effects on teeth includes:
- Stained teeth and tongue
- Bad breath
- Inflammation of the salivary gland openings
- Build up of plaque and tartar on teeth
- Gum disease like Periodontal Disease, can lead to tooth loss
- Dulled sense of taste
- Delayed healing process after oral surgery
- Increased risk of getting oral cancer
Cigarettes have been a part of the market for much longer than vaping, so several studies prove the negative effects on oral and overall health that they can have. So the point of concern among many vapers is if vaping has similar effects like cigarettes do.
Is Vaping Bad for Your Teeth?
Extended vaping may affect your teeth in some ways. E-cigarettes are typically filled with vape e-liquid that are composed of a few ingredients. E-liquids are normally made with: nicotine (except for 0mg e-juices), propylene glycol (PG), vegetable glycerin (VG), water, and flavoring (depends on the e-juice brand). Nicotine, e-cigarette aerosol, and propylene glycol are the culprits to the potential negative oral health effects.
Is Vaping Better for Your Teeth Than Smoking?
There has only been one study so far that shows the effects of smoking vs. vaping. The clinical study involved 110 tobacco smokers switch to e-cigarettes, dental experts tracked their progress after 60 and 120 days. Dental experts and the participants saw some improvements in their teeth and gums. Some of the improvements seen were reduction of bacterial plaque, smell, and reduction in gum bleeding. The researches suggested that this was most likely due to the fact that the subjects were only ingesting nicotine and not tobacco and other harmful chemicals found in cigarettes. 
According to this study, vaping reduces the oral side-effects of smoking tobacco, but more studies need to be conducted in order to get a clearer answer on the long term effects of vaping.
The Effects of Vaping on Teeth
Luckily, for vapers wondering, “does vaping stain your teeth?” the answer is no. Vaping is still fairly new and there are not enough studies that show the long-term oral side effects, but there is some research that suggests vaping can have negative effects. The potential effects include:
- Oral/Gum Disease: Based on studies of traditional cigarettes, nicotine is known to harm your mouth, gums, and tongue. Vaping extremely high nicotine levels may lead to the development of gingivitis and periodontal disease. Symptoms of gum diseases are bad breath and gum inflammation.
- Excess Bacteria: A study conducted in 2018 found that teeth exposed to e-cigarette aerosol had more bacteria than those that hadn’t.  This could be due to the reduced blood circulation caused by nicotine delivery. Excess bacteria buildup is associated with tooth decay, cavities, and gum diseases.
- Dry Mouth: Propylene glycol (PG), found in almost all e-liquids, can cause mouth dryness. PG is a hygroscopic compound that it attracts water molecules and draws them away from the surroundings. Chronic mouth dryness is associated with bad breath, mouth sores, and tooth decay.
Symptoms to Look Out For
Don't worry too much, vaping electronic cigarettes doesn’t automatically mean you will get a gum/oral disease. It’s just important to understand the possible effects that vaping can have on your teeth and mouth. Being aware of the symptoms of Periodontal Disease and other gum diseases is important so you can detect the issue early on. Here are a few to look out for:
Constant bad breath
Irritated or bleeding gums
Swollen and tender gums
Wobbly teeth or tooth loss
Detecting these symptoms early are crucial because early treatment is more likely to be successful. These symptoms are related to gum diseases, but can occur for other reasons aside from vaping. Remember these are just potential side effects of vaping, practice good oral hygiene to avoid health risks.
Vaping and Oral Health
Dental care is important, especially if you are an avid vaper. Here are a few simple tips to help minimize the damage that vaping can cause:
Choose your e-liquid carefully: Opt for a safer alternative like lower or no-nicotine juices, around 0-3mg. Nicotine causes oral health issues, so to limit the risks start vaping lower or no nicotine e-juices. Look for e-juices that have less PG, so choose higher VG or max VG e-juices. PG is the main cause of dry mouth, so if you are experiencing constant dry mouth then switch to higher VG.
Drink more water: Everyone should drink a lot of water, but especially vapers. As we discussed earlier, PG can cause dry mouth which can lead to bad breath, mouth sores, and tooth decay . So drink plenty of water if you are vaping frequently!
Brush your teeth better: All dentists can agree to this! Brush your teeth at least twice a day to minimize the risk of developing oral health issues. Also avoid vaping after brushing teeth, it can lead to you being dehydrated and cause dry mouth.
Just like traditional cigarettes and tobacco products, e-cigarettes can cause potential damage to your teeth and mouth. This is not an excuse to switch back to tobacco cigarettes! Tobacco products can cause a handful of different health problems, not just damage to your oral health. Studies prove that the health effects of cigarettes are far worse than vaping.
So is vaping bad for teeth? There still needs to be significant research conducted to determine the long term effects of vaping, but it is important to know that there are potential oral health issues. So remember to choose your e-liquids carefully and keep up with proper dental care!
At Vapebox, we offer e-liquid subscription boxes to help vapers discover different e-juices every month. We are offering free vape juice to new customers, it's a great opportunity to get started vaping and discovering different brands of e-liquids.