Although the detrimental health effects of smoking on human health are well described, the impact of smoking on dental plaque build-up lacks consistent records. This is because dental research on periodontal health has primarily relied on subjective indices with poor discriminatory power. Novel digital imaging techniques for the objective quantitation of dental plaque are now available. Quantitative Light-Induced Fluorescence (QLF) technology has been used in several studies for digital quantification and monitoring of dental plaque.
The objective of the study is to quantitate and compare short- and long-term repeatability of dental plaque among current, former, and never smokers by using a high resolution, auto-focus, hand-held QLF scanner (QRayCam™ Pro; Inspektor Research Systems BV, Amsterdam, NL).
Demonstration of good reproducibility of QLF technology with clear discrimination for dental plaque quantitation among current, former, and never smokers will pave the way to future application of this test for both medical and regulatory research applied not only to combustion-free tobacco products (e.g. e-cigarettes, heated tobacco products, oral tobacco/nicotine products, etc.) and smoking cessation medications, but also to consume care product for oral hygiene.