Methamphetamine, or meth, is a highly acidic stimulant that causes a host of problems for the person taking it. High on the list is damage to teeth and gums. Several factors combine to create havoc inside the mouth of someone who struggles with a substance use disorder involving meth. Meth effects on teeth can be swift and permanent and may include:
- Severe tooth decay
- Diseased gums
- Cracked, broken or missing teeth
- Bad breath
- Unattractive smile
If you struggle with meth, or if you care about someone who’s addicted, Recovery Ranch in Tennessee can help you break the vicious cycle that’s destroying your smile as well as your future.
Why Is Meth So Hard on Your Teeth?
Millions of people struggle with addiction, and it doesn’t affect their teeth. So, why is meth use so visible? Partly, it’s because meth often contains acidic contaminants that destroy tooth enamel and burn skin and gums. Ingredients such as antifreeze, battery acid, lantern fuel, drain cleaner, and lye destroy the lining of the mouth and the teeth of those who ingest meth. Meth effects on teeth become highly visible over time and use, to the point where dentists and medical professionals can diagnose it as soon as you walk through the door of their offices. But, there are other factors at play when it comes to meth effects on teeth, too. These all impact the oral health of someone who’s battling meth. They include the following:
Meth makes you feel snacky. As a result, you crave foods and beverages such as sugary sweets and carbonated soft drinks. These are two food choices that are bad for your teeth. They cause cavities and decay on a good day. When combined with poor oral hygiene, the combination can be devastating to your smile.
Poor Dental Hygiene
Meth provides a quick high, followed by an unappealing low. Consequently, people who use meth tend to use it in constant cycles. People who are under the influence of meth are rarely capable of maintaining good hygiene habits, especially when it comes to flossing and brushing.
The euphoric highs and debilitating lows of meth addiction may cause you to clench or grind your teeth without realizing it. This wears away at tooth enamel and can cause teeth to crack or break.
Xerostomia, or dry mouth, is a by-product of frequent meth use. It prevents the saliva glands from producing needed moisture to wash food debris away from the teeth. Saliva also acts as a neutralizer, diminishing the harmful accumulation of acids in the mouth. Lastly, saliva helps restore needed minerals to your teeth. When your glands aren’t producing enough saliva, damage to teeth and gums may occur.
How Are Meth Effects on Teeth Treated?
To treat meth effects on teeth, you must treat the substance use disorder that’s causing it. This is because, after a certain point, teeth are no longer salvageable, and they must be replaced instead of repaired. To replace a full set of teeth, however, healthy gums are required. Even if a dentist extracts all your teeth, he or she won’t be able to replace them with dentures if you’re still using meth. If you’re locked in a losing battle with methamphetamine, and you want out, Recovery Ranch has the resources to help. Once you’ve detoxed from meth and abstain from using it altogether, a dental professional can replace unsightly teeth. You can have a whole smile again — one that’s bright and shining — just as you can have a whole future ahead of you. All it takes is treatment for meth addiction, like that provided by Recovery Ranch in Tennessee.
Recovery Ranch Can Help
At Recovery Ranch, we treat substance use disorders that involve methamphetamine. Through a range of evidence-based therapies, we can lead you gently out of the dark valley of addiction and into the light of a drug-free life. Replace your smile in more ways than one, when you seek treatment for meth addiction in Tennessee. Reach out today and call us at 1.844.876.7680 to begin the next phase of your life — a phase that’s free from meth and all the damage it causes. We’re waiting right now to take your call.