How Alcohol and Drug Abuse Damages Your Teeth

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I’m going to let you in on a little secret. And please don’t take offense. Just accept the fact I’m going to present and deal with it. Okay, here it goes…

If you’ve been abusing alcohol, cigarettes, hard drugs or any combination of these three things over the last few years (or worse, 10 or 20 years), your teeth and gums are suffering and your breath stinks. Does that sound mean? Sorry, it’s just a fact.

Anyone who has been an active addict for any length of time has done damage to their teeth and gums. Additionally, your digestive system is unhealthy which means you’re producing too much bile and acid which adds to the inevitable stench coming out of your mouth.

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Alcohol has a high sugar content which causes damage to your gums, teeth and tongue. Likewise, alcohol causes dehydration and dry mouth, which results in decay and infection. Cocaine (especially when smoked) has a terrible impact on your teeth, rotting them quickly. I once knew a coke addict whose teeth literally began dropping out of his mouth when he brushed his teeth. He didn’t experience any pain when they dropped out. They just fell effortless into the bathroom sink with a sad clink on the porcelain. Not the nicest way to start your morning.

There are volumes of information on the harm that cigarettes do to your teeth and gums. If you’re a smoker, cigarettes have a huge impact on the health of your mouth as well as every other part of your body. Any non-smoker will tell you that kissing a smoker is as pleasant as licking a dirty ashtray.

So the bottom line is this: most likely your mouth has suffered as much as the rest of your body from your addiction.

One of the first things you need to do (if you can afford it) is visit a dentist to get an assessment of the damage done and what you need to do about it. Additionally, your diet will have a huge impact on the health of your teeth, gums and tongue. As you begin to improve your diet, over time you will also begin to experience an improvement in your oral hygiene.

*Health Tip: Stay hydrated. In addition to brushing and flossing your teeth several times per day, water is very effective in diminishing bad breath and cleansing your mouth. Keep a bottle of water with you at all times and drink it all day, every day.


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