woman getting her teeth checked

Can your dentist tell if you smoke? 5 things they can detect during your check-up

As you look around your mouth for signs of cavities or plaque accumulation before a dental check-up, you could be forgiven for thinking that this is all a dental team will check for.

Of course, your dental team will also check for signs of gum disease and for any wobbly teeth, but you may be amazed to learn that there are a myriad of things your dental team can detect during your routine visits.

The mouth is the gateway to the body and, while it may seem cliche’, you can tell a lot by looking at someone’s teeth. And as much as you may try to scrub those nicotine stains off of your teeth, few things will escape the trained eye of your dentist in Sydney CBD.

So what can your dentist from Sydney CBD determine by glancing at your teeth?

You regularly brush (or don’t!)

A quick scrub and floss before your check-up may seem an obvious step, but if you routinely neglect your oral hygiene, your dentist near Sydney CBD will know.

How? There are areas of the mouth that are naturally harder to reach for regular at-home cleans and so, if you don’t brush twice a day, your dental team will detect the accumulated plaque. If you have misaligned teeth and are trying your best to maintain good hygiene, your team may be able to suggest additional brushing techniques or appliances (such as interdental brushes) improve your dental health.

You are pregnant

This only applies to female patients but a shocking 40% of all pregnant women experience gingivitis in the first trimester of pregnancy. The surge of progesterone during that early stage of pregnancy can cause the formation of pregnancy granulomas but, usually by this point, most patients will know that they are pregnant.

You smoke

smoking concept

One of the most common things that dental patients try to hide is that they smoke.

Nothing goes unnoticed under the eye of a trained dental practitioner and so, those minor yellow stains on your teeth and gums will be picked up on. Dental teams will try to help you stop smoking, as it is the leading cause of oral cancer. If you are ready to kick the habit, talk to your team about smoking cessation.

You have acid reflux

If you suffer from acid reflux or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), your dental team will be able to spot it. As this disorder typically occurs at night as you lay down, the acid can cause erosion on the back of your teeth, heightening sensitivity. Your team will be able to apply fluoride sealants to protect your teeth from any further damage, but you should see your doctor to prevent the erosion from worsening and causing further damage.

You used to suck your thumb

This seemingly harmless behaviour in childhood can lead to the roof of your mouth being misshapen, causing a unique looking overbite. If you want to resolve this, your dental team will be able to offer you orthodontic treatments.


Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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