Effects of Smoking on Oral Health : Preliminary Evaluation for a Long-Term Study of a Group with Good Oral Hygiene

흡연이 구강 건강에 미치는 영향 : 구강 위생이 양호한 집단의 장기적 연구를 위한 예비 평가

  • Lee, Hyun-Suk (Department of Oral Medicine and Institute of Dental Science, School of Dentistry Dankook University) ;
  • Kim, Mee-Eun (Department of Oral Medicine and Institute of Dental Science, School of Dentistry Dankook University)
  • 이현석 (단국대학교 치과대학 구강내과학교실.치의학연구소) ;
  • 김미은 (단국대학교 치과대학 구강내과학교실.치의학연구소)
  • Received : 2011.10.10
  • Accepted : 2011.11.21
  • Published : 2011.12.30


Tobacco smoking is a major risk factor of systemic health and also impairs oral health, which is related to development of oral cancers, periodontitis, delayed wound healing, tooth loss, failure of implant, etc. Aside from smoking, many other risk factors can be related to oral health and long-term effects of smoking on salivary flow and taste threshold are still in controversy. Authors considered dental students to be an appropriate group with good oral hygiene for a long-term study to reveal effects of smoking on oral health. This study was performed to compare smoking patterns and current oral health conditions between smokers and nonsmokers in dental students prior to long-term evaluation. 192 volunteers (85.7%) of 224 male dental students in Dankook University were evaluated through questionnaires and clinical examination in 2010. Questionnaires included smoking pattern, alcohol use, nicotine dependence, preventive care, psychological profile and clinical examinations comprised assessment of teeth or periodontal status, nicotine pigmentation, salivary flow, electrical taste thresholds and halitosis. From the study, (current) smokers were older, and drank more frequently with more alcohol intake compared to former smokers and nonsmokers(p<0.05). There was no significant difference among them in salivary flow rate, halitosis and electrical taste threshold. However, there was significant difference in DMFT rate, periodontal treatment need, nicotinic pigmentation between smokers and nonsmokers(p<0.05), irrespective of their levels of preventive care. The smokers in this study, who are young dental students with relatively shorter duration of smoking, less use of cigarettes and low level of nicotine dependence, did not reveal significant impairment of oral health. However, their oral health was found to be relatively impaired compared to nonsmokers', which suggests negative effect of smoking on the oral health and a need of smoking cessation.


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