By Terrileigh Wilkinson
A MAN who lost his teeth due to smoking has issued a warning to young people to kick the habit.
Nigel Lambrick, 48 from Swansea, started smoking at the age of 13 and said puffing on up to 30 cigarettes a day made his teeth fall out.
Mr Lambrick received a pair of NHS false teeth, but did not like the colour and shape of them.
He decided to go private and went to City Dental Surgery in Leeds, paying almost £600 for a better pair of dentures.
Nigel said: “I didn’t want to smile before I had dentures, I felt like everyone was looking at my teeth.
“The NHS dentures looked like joke teeth, I went private and the results outweighed the cost.”
According to Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), smoking in the UK costs the NHS around £2 billion a year in treatment.
But ASH has concerns that the government’s spending on anti-smoking campaigns has fallen sharply in recent years from £25 million in 2009-10, to just over £5 million in 2015-16.
ASH believes this, combined with cuts to local stop smoking services, is worrying and could lead to a reversal of the current rate of decline in smoking across the UK.
Amanda Sandford, information manager at ASH, said: “Smoking places a huge burden on the NHS, the cost of social care as a result of a smoking illness is around £1.4 billion.
“Mass media campaigns such as Stoptober are effective in reducing smoking, and therefore can reduce the burden on the NHS, provided they are sustained and adequately resourced.
“The campaigns should also direct smokers to professional advice about stopping smoking, for example via the national NHS smoke free quit line.”
NICE has estimated that for every £1 invested, £2.37 will be saved on treating smoking-related diseases and lost productivity, said Ms Sandford.
According to Colgate Oral Care Denture, around 90% of people suffering from some type of throat cancer, have used tobacco.
Smokers are six times more likely than non-smokers to develop cancer.
Although dental implants can replace lost teeth, smokers have an increased chance that the procedure will not work.
According to the Academy of General Dentistry, men who smoke lose 2.9 teeth for every 10 years they smoke, and for women it’s 1.5 teeth per decade.
Tobacco restricts the blood flow to the gum tissues, which limits the amount of nutrients necessary to bones that support the teeth.