5 Surprising Habits that Could Harm Your Teeth
Are you unknowingly harming your teeth? Preventing damage to your teeth is important since a bad habit could lead to the need for corrective and restorative treatments from a dentist.
You might be surprised by these lesser-known habits that can damage your pearly whites.
Biting Your Nails
It might seem like biting your nails only affects the appearance of your manicure. The truth is that nail biting can cause harm to your teeth. The act of biting our nails can lead to permanent damage to tooth enamel, prematurely weakened tooth structure, and broken teeth. Underneath our nails are millions of bacteria, which can increase our risks for oral infections.
Our team recommends chewing sugar-free gum when you’re nervous instead of biting at your nails.
Drinking Acidic Beverages
Soda, kombucha, fruit juices, tea, and cocktails are acidic beverages that often contain unhealthy amounts of sugar. Over time, acid degrades tooth enamel. Tooth enamel cannot self-regenerate, which increases the risks for decay and dental injuries.
Some acidic beverages are fine in moderation; however, we recommend swapping out acidic and sugary beverages with plain or sparkling water whenever possible.
Many people clench their jaws and grind their teeth as a response to pain, stress, and anxiety. This habit is clinically known as “bruxism”. Over time, bruxism will destroy tooth enamel – leaving soft and vulnerable structures within teeth exposed to oral bacteria. Bruxism can also contribute to the development of TMJ disorder, a painful condition that can make oral function difficult and uncomfortable.
Forgetting to Replace Your Toothbrush
Toothbrushes should be replaced every four months (or sooner if you become sick with infections like the common cold, strep throat, or the flu). One way to help you remember when to replace your toothbrush is to add reminders to digital or conventional calendars.
Aggressive Oral Hygiene
Are you brushing and flossing vigorously? Aggressive oral hygiene techniques increase your risks for a number of dental issues. It’s best to take your time and a gentle approach to brushing and flossing.
If it’s time for a checkup or cleaning, call our practice to schedule an appointment with our dentist.