Background: Smoking, which is an important risk factor for periodontitis, induces oxidative stress in the body and causes an imbalance between reactive oxygen species (ROS) and antioxidants, such as superoxide dismutase (SOD), In the present study, the influence of smoking on the periodontium was determined by estimating the levels of SOD in light and heavy smokers with periodontitis. Methods: Seventy subjects in the age range of 20 to 55 years, including 60 smokers and 10 non-smokers (controls), were selected. Clinical parameters recorded were plaque index (PI), probing depth (PD), and attachment loss (AL). Smokers were divided into light smokers (<10 cigarettes/ day) and heavy smokers (>10 cigarettes/day) and into three subgroups: healthy, mild periodontitis, and moderate periodontitis. Gingival crevicular fluid (GCF) and saliva samples were collected. SOD levels were analyzed using spectrophoto-metric assay. Results: The mean levels of SOD in the GCF and saliva of smokers were decreased compared to controls. Intra- and in-tergroup analyses showed a significant reduction in the levels of SOD in the GCF and saliva of heavy smokers compared to light smokers and the control group. Conclusions: There was a progressive reduction in SOD levels from healthy non-smokers to light smokers to heavy smokers. These findings highlight the need to augment the efforts of smoking-cessation programs. The benefits of reduced smoking and improved antioxidant levels may motivate smoking cessation.
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