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Smoking And How It Affects Your Braces

For many in the UK, braces are a common method for correcting dental issues and achieving that coveted perfect smile. However, certain habits, like smoking, can significantly affect the process. Understanding the implications of smoking on orthodontic treatment is crucial for those looking to get the best results from their braces.

The Effects of Smoking on Orthodontic Treatment

Smoking can jeopardize the success of braces in multiple ways. From staining brackets to causing serious oral health issues, the impacts are both cosmetic and profound.

Increased Plaque and Tartar Buildup

Smokers are more prone to experiencing a buildup of plaque and tartar. This can lead to issues such as gum disease and tooth decay, which are detrimental to orthodontic treatment.

Higher Risk of Gum Disease

Smoking is a leading cause of gum disease, a condition that can complicate orthodontic treatment by affecting the supporting tissues of the teeth.

Delayed Tooth Movement

The nicotine in tobacco can impair blood flow to the gums, slowing down the process of tooth movement and prolonging the duration of orthodontic treatment.

“Smoking not only affects your oral health but can significantly delay the progress of orthodontic treatments. Quitting smoking is one of the best steps you can take to ensure a smoother, faster treatment process.” – UK Orthodontic Specialist

Understanding the Risks

It’s important for patients with braces to be fully aware of the risks smoking poses to their orthodontic treatment and overall oral health.

  • Increased risk of oral infections
  • Longer healing times for orthodontic procedures
  • Higher likelihood of unsatisfactory outcomes

Strategies to Mitigate the Effects of Smoking

While the best advice for smokers with braces is to quit, there are strategies to mitigate the effects of smoking if quitting immediately isn’t an option.

  1. Regular dental cleanings to manage plaque and tartar buildup.
  2. Using a high-quality mouthwash to fight bacteria and maintain gum health.
  3. Seeking support to quit smoking, such as NHS stop smoking services.

Data on Smoking and Orthodontic Treatment

Research highlights the tangible impacts smoking has on orthodontic treatment outcomes.

Plaque BuildupIncrease by 70%
Gum Disease RiskTwice as likely
Treatment DurationExtended by 30%


For individuals undergoing orthodontic treatment in the UK, smoking poses significant risks not only to the success of their braces but to their overall oral health. The correlation between smoking and increased complications during orthodontic treatment is clear. By understanding these risks and taking active steps to quit smoking, patients can significantly improve their orthodontic treatment outcomes and enjoy the benefits of a healthier, straighter smile.

Taking Action

Quitting smoking is not just beneficial for orthodontic treatment but is a significant step towards improving overall health. The NHS offers various resources and support systems to help individuals quit smoking, providing a pathway to a healthier lifestyle.

Resources for Quitting Smoking:

  • NHS Stop Smoking Services: Offers free support and resources.
  • Smokefree App: A mobile application providing daily tips and motivation.
  • Quit Smoking Helpline: Professional advice and encouragement.

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Dr Hooman Sanaty and his team at Glow Dental in Battersea are brilliant. From the moment you walk into the dental practice you are treated with genuine smiles, warmth and kindness by the reception team which has a calming effect and puts you at ease instantly.- Alia M
Visited Glow Dental for the first time today, and it's been some time since I had a dental check up. Stephen was an excellent dentist, really put me at ease, and I valued that he could not only talk me through - but also show me - the condition of my teeth and gums. He was really helpful with all my questions too.- Felicity B
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