With all the implications of cannabis and cannabis-derived products in medical care, we should not be surprised that they are making their way into dentistry as well. But let’s first take a look at the known effects of cannabis use on the mouth and dental health.
Smoking cannabis isn’t really healthy activity for the oral health, just like smoking tobacco it can cause increased amounts of plaque, tooth decay, gum diseases and increased risk of mouth and neck cancer. It is also responsible for bad breath, altered sense of taste or stained and rotten teeth. The tar in marijuana cigarettes contains carcinogens comparable to those of tobacco cigarettes, and it has been suggested that a single cannabis cigarette could be more harmful than the latter, as the tar is inhaled more deeply. Periodontitis is a common chronic disease among smokers. A study of adolescents in Chile, however, found no association between regular use of cannabis and periodontal disease, but it may be expected that long-term use would result in periodontal disease later in life. In a histometric experiment, laboratory rats exposed to cannabis smoke had a significant increase in alveolar bone loss due to periodontitis, despite research that has indicated that specific cannabinoids, such as the non-psychotropic cannabidiol (CBD), may prevent bone loss. Note, that according to the World Health Organization (WHO), oral diseases are the most common non communicable diseases.
As unhealthy for the mouth and teeth smoking marijuana could be, CBD products seem to have positive effect as a complementary treatment and prevention in oral care. Cannabidiol is strongly increasing in popularity in the US. With two-thirds of the American states allowing its use, a recent survey among 2000 adults reported 1500 of them having used a CBD product in the past three months. Adding CBD in dental products does make sense, as this substance has proved to have positive effect on the bones, suitable for treating inflammation and pain.
Some patients report having used in self-medicating fashion cannabis to relieve themselves of the anxiety before dentist’s appointment. As mentioned above, smoking isn’t the best option, but CBD oils have proved through many studies to successfully fight the feelings of anxiety.
Some cannabis pharmaceutical companies are already making moves developing and testing cannabis-derived oral care solutions. The simplest implementation of CBD seems to be the in mouthwashes and natural toothpastes, but with its anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects CBD could easily be featured in post dental surgery medications or on its own in the form of pure CBD oil.
The Cannabisradar-Team wishes you an nice day!