Bad Habits that Harm Your Teeth

Bad Habits that Harm Your Teeth

Everyone has a few bad habits. Most of the time, they’re not too detrimental to your health. However, there are a few that can harm your teeth. If you are guilty of any of these, try to break them as soon as you can.

Nail-biting

This habit is usually discouraged because of how it makes your nails look, but it can affect your teeth as well. Constantly chewing nails can potentially chip the teeth and even impact your jaw. To break this habit, try using bitter-tasting nail polishes; there are even some made specifically for nail-biters. This habit is often induced by stress, so try to identify the cause and reduce your stressors.

Brushing too hard

You might think that the harder you brush, the cleaner your teeth will be. Actually, brushing too hard, or brushing with a toothbrush that’s too hard, can damage the teeth and irritate the gums. To remedy this, be mindful of how much pressure you’re using or switch to a soft-bristle toothbrush.

Grinding and clenching

Another habit that is often caused by stress, grinding and clenching can cause the teeth to chip or crack. It can also cause muscle tenderness in the jaw or joint pain. Relaxation exercises can help to relieve stress. A night guard (a special mouth guard made to be worn while you sleep) is also a good solution.

Chewing ice cubes

Sure, most of the time, when you chew an ice cube, it’s the cube that breaks. However, there is the chance that your tooth will crack when you bite down on that ice cube. Avoid this risk by only drinking the liquid and not gulping down the ice. Try getting chilled drinks without ice or use a straw so that you’re not tempted.

Constant snacking

Brushing twice a day is usually sufficient to keep your teeth clean, but if you’re constantly snacking, you’re leaving a lot of debris on your teeth, which create a feast for the bacteria in your mouth. These bacteria produce an acid that is very harmful to teeth enamel. To break the habit, try to make your meals more balanced to stay fuller longer. Choose snacks that are low in sugar and fat. If you do eat a sugary snack, follow it with a glass of water to wash away food debris and sugars.