Vaping & Gum Disease – Myth Debunked!

As the Tweet above says – there has been a lot of discussion about whether vaping has impact on the health of teeth and gums?

What triggered this conversation?

I am not sure if I am honest but some of the origin of the latest spat appears to be from The Times article – Elf Bars and Me, I’m a vaping addict so will I get gum disease?

I did get to read this and it seemed to be utter horseshit, but I can’t revisit it as it’s behind a paywall!

Another catalyst may have been this statement from the BDA (British Dental Association) in response to the Khan Review!

“We accept the harms from vaping are less than from smoking. However, there have been recent suggestions linking disposable vapes to gum disease. Epidemiological studies also highlight concerns over oral dryness, irritation, and gum diseases.

Mick Armstrong, Chair of the British Dental Association’s Health and Science Committee said: “The risks of long-term oral and general health problems from e-cigarettes are frankly an unknown. With products that are so new, officials must keep an eye on emerging evidence, particularly given high uptake among young people.”

As you can imagine there has been some backlash – including this tweet from Linda Bauld who is a Professor of Public Health at Edinburgh University and Chief Social Policy advisor to the Scottish Government.

Here is the transcript of the letter Dr Richard Holliday (Senior Lecturer and Honorary Consultant in Restorative Dentistry, Specialist in Periodontics) and Professor Elaine McColl (Professor of Health Service Research at Newcastle University) sent to The Times Newspaper.

“Sir, The article “Elf bars and me: I’m a vaping addict, so will I get gum disease?” (Times June 8th) suggests that the use of e-cigarettes (and specifically nicotine) leads to Gum disease, but this does not represent the scientific evidence in this field. Tobacco smoking is a major cause of oral diseases including Periodontal (Gum) disease. Smoke and not Nicotine is responsible for these harms, although this often gets confused.

Indeed oral nicotine, such as Gum, has been used without concern for decades. Nicotine use does not lead to Gum disease. In the case of bleeding gums, it is normal for smokers to get this when they quit; if this happens those affected should see their dental team for a full examination.

Finally smokers who are thinking about switching to an e-cigarette should bear in mind that this is a great move for their general and oral health”

I think that is called a “Mic Drop”

IVBTA Response
The IBVTA (Independent British Vape Trade Association) have responded in their article here – IBVTA commentary on article linking gum disease to vaping.