A research team led by Dr. Marco Tatullo from the Calabrodental Clinic in Crotone, Italy, suggests that smokers who switch to vaping can vastly improve oral health. Dentists have known for decades that smoking is bad for the teeth and gums. It increases the chances of gingivitis, tooth loss, bleeding gums, and gum disease while also steadily yellowing the tooth enamel. The tar and chemicals found in tobacco cigarettes is the main culprit, while the e-liquids of electronic cigarettes and vaping devices are free of these nasty substances.
Overview of the Tatullo vaping study
After randomly selecting a group of 305 smokers, the Tatullo team then asked 110 of these volunteers to stop smoking and switch to vaping for at least 120-days. Every 60-days, the scientists measured several biomarkers related to general oral health for each of the participates. The results of the study are compiled into a research paper entitled, Crosstalk between oral and general health status in e-smokers which is published in the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health (NCBI).
- The 305 original participants were divided into
- Group One: Smokers with a history of smoking of greater than ten years
- 110 smokers were ultimately chosen for the trail.
- Group Two: Smokers with a history of smoking of less than ten years
- Biomakers measured included:
- Plaque index levels
- Bleeding of the gums
- Gum disease, including gingivitis and periodontitis
- Deviations in oral and general health
- 85 percent of Group One exhibited lower plaque index scores of between 1 and 3 at the beginning of the trial. 15 percent exhibited a near-zero score. At the end of the study, 92 percent achieved ratings of zero.
- 75 percent of Group Two scored an original plaque index score of 2 or higher. No members exhibited a zero-plaque rating. At the end of the study, 87 percent registered plaque indexes of zero.
- At the beginning of the trial, 61 percent of Group One exhibited signs of bleeding gums. By the end of the study, 92 percent showed no symptoms whatsoever.
- Group Two went from 65 percent at the beginning of the trail to a whopping 98 percent being symptom-free.
- 71 percent of both groups rated their general physical health as well as the oral health of their teeth and gums to be “quite better” or “better” by the end of the trail.
- 30 of the members reported no significant changes while 2 participants claimed a slight diminishment in overall health.
Another interesting discovery is that 80 percent of the 110 participants even registered an improvement in their senses of taste and smell. A substantial portion even claimed to witness a decreased desire to vape as frequently as they previously smoked tobacco cigarettes.