I smoke marijuana three times a week and it’s starting to stain my teeth. 2 years ago my doctor prescribed it for pain. It helps a lot but my teeth are suffering from it. People who know me remember my white teeth and are asking if I’ve started smoking. I don’t want to be judged or have conversations about why I’m smoking marijuana so I just say no. If I give too much detail then I will also get questions about my medical condition. I just say no I’m not smoking, and the conversation doesn’t go any further. I want to do something about my teeth for myself – not because of the questions I’m getting. I don’t want to ask my dentist about teeth whitening before I get an independent opinion first. My dentist will say he can do anything I ask. I brush and floss daily and I have even used whitening strips, but the stains don’t look much better. So can a family dentist get stains out of my teeth from smoking marijuana? Thanks. Jill
Jill – Whitening strips usually have limited results on embedded stains. Your family dentist can remove stains from smoking tobacco or marijuana with professional-strength bleaching gel. Your teeth should be cleaned by your hygienist and examined before any whitening treatment is started.
When you have a dental cleaning from a hygienist, surface stains on your teeth are removed. If any deeper stains remain, your dentist can whiten them for you. Depending on the whitening treatment your family dentist offers, you can receive in-office or take-home whitening.
We suggest that you let your dentist know you are smoking marijuana for medicinal purposes. Note the following facts for people who smoke marijuana:
· Calculus builds on your teeth faster.
· Gum disease rates are higher.
· Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in marijuana stimulated your appetite and promotes snacking. This exposes your teeth to acid from sweet food and drinks and increases the chances of tooth decay.
Your family dentist might suggest that you schedule hygiene appointments more frequently than the bi-yearly recommendation.
Before your teeth are whitened, your dentist will ensure your teeth and gums are healthy and free from decay. If they are, after a thorough hygiene appointment, you can discuss your options for teeth whitening.
This post is sponsored by San Jose dentists Dr. Ralph Stanley, Dr. Magdalena Azzarelli, and Dr. Rogé Jacob of Hillsdale Dental Care.