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Why Do People Who Abuse Methamphetamine Lose Their Teeth?

Question by : Why do people who abuse methamphetamine lose their teeth?
I do not use meth at all or anything like it but I know people who have in the past and they ALL lost their teeth and wear dentures, is it because of the meth or is it because of just not taking care of their teeth? Some of these people are not that old either.

Best answer:

Answer by Annie
Meth addicts who smoke and/or snort meth very often get what is now known as “Meth Mouth.”

Meth addicts don’t tend to take very good care of their teeth – like brushing and flossing, and seeing a dentist on a regular basis.

The second reason why meth addicts have so many dental problems is because meth is cooked using all sorts of ingredients that aren’t meant to be breathed in or have any contact with your body: drain cleaner, match heads, lithium from batteries, fertilizer, antifreeze, etc.

These addicts also tend to grind their teeth when they’re high. They also tend to crave sugar.

Lastly, meth reduces the blood flow to the mouth, so the teeth, gums, etc don’t get enough nourishment. Meth dries up the saliva glands which leads to increased tooth decay. In addition, meth users are often malnourished period, since meth is an appetite suppressant, and don’t eat right to meet their bodies’ needs.

Answer by Endless
Methamphetamine addicts may lose their teeth abnormally fast, a condition known as “meth mouth”. Similar, though far less severe symptoms have been reported in clinical use of other amphetamines, where effects are not exacerbated by a lack of oral hygiene for extended periods. It may ruins a person’s smile and natural ability to chew, recently the American Dental Association warns.

The extensive tooth decay is due to methamphetamine’s acidic nature, which destroys tooth-protecting enamel, and its tendency to dry the mouth.

dry mouth results from a reduced flow of saliva. Saliva is needed to wash away food and neutralize the acids produced by the bacteria in plaque. If you don’t have enough saliva to do this, these acids can cause extensive decay.

Moreover, a methamphetamine “high” lasts much longer than a crack cocaine high (12 hours versus 1 hour) and this can lead to long periods when users are unlikely to think about cleaning their teeth.

Methamphetamine makes users thirsty and craving sugary drinks. Mountain Dew has become the preferred drink of methamphetamine users, and a 12 ounce can contains about 12 teaspoons of sugar.

Methamphetamine abuse can also lead to bruxism, or grinding of teeth. This occurs because addicts become nervous and paranoid and tend to hallucinate. Persistent bruxism may explain why teeth become twisted in a patient with meth mouth.

“Meth mouth” can rob users, “especially young people, of their teeth and frequently leads to full-mouth extractions and a lifetime of wearing dentures,”

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Forest – testimony from a recovered meth user – A seedling grows amidst a charred forest representing new life. The testimony is from a recovered methamphetamine user.