A WINCHESTER dental practice is urging residents to give up smoking for ‘Stoptober’.

City Bridge Dental is promoting the NHS’s 28-day challenge to go without cigarettes after recent research showed one fifth of Hampshire adults smoke.

Mary Gibson, specialist periodontist, who specialises in gum disease at the Bridge Street practice, said: “We are all aware of the dangers smoking can have on general health but it is important not to overlook the problems smoking can also cause on dental health. “Smoking is one of the leading causes of gum disease as the nicotine limits the blood flow to the gum tissue, restricting the necessary nutrients to the periodontal support of the teeth. In more advanced gum disease this can lead to loosening of the teeth, bone loss and teeth drifting.

“It can take up to two years for the effects of smoking to clear from the mouth completely but it’s never too late to seek advice and beat the habit.”

For more details on the challenge visit smokefree.nhs.uk/stoptober.