Bad Habits That Can Damage Oral Health

Bad Habits That Can Damage Oral Health

Good oral hygiene habits are essential to maintain healthy teeth and gums and teeth. Whether you are brushing your teeth regularly or using mouthwash, there are certain habits that can negatively affect your oral health. Listed below are some of the habits that can damage your oral health.

  • Poor oral hygiene

Not brushing and flossing regularly is one of the most common bad habits that can cause cavities, gum disease, and other oral health issues. These issues can increase your risk of developing other health problems. You should brush your teeth at least twice a day to prevent plaque buildup and tooth decay. You should also floss daily to remove food particles from between your teeth.

In addition to brushing and flossing, you should also visit your dentist’s office every six months for a cleaning and checkup. During the cleaning, we will remove plaque and tartar from your teeth and gums. We will also examine your mouth for signs of any developing conditions. This can prevent issues such as gingivitis and periodontitis from worsening. If you do not maintain good oral hygiene habits, you are putting your oral health at risk.

  • Using teeth as tools

Teeth aren’t meant for opening packages or tearing tags off clothing. In fact, putting too much stress on your pearly whites can lead to chips, cracks, and breaks. Be gentle with your teeth. Avoid opening packages with your teeth. Instead, use scissors or a utility knife.

  • Bruxism

Although teeth grinding and jaw clenching aren’t harmful habits on their own, they can cause serious damage to your smile if they’re left untreated. This is because bruxism is a primary indicator of an undiagnosed sleep disorder like sleep apnea or restless legs syndrome. If you suffer from bruxism, it’s important to see your dentist for screening and get a mouth guard. Otherwise, your night guard won’t stop the damage caused by the underlying condition.

  • Nail-biting

Nail-biting is a common bad habit that could damage your oral health. Nail-biting habits can lead to excess wear and tear on your teeth. The friction that occurs when you chew your nails can also lead to chipping or fracturing of the enamel. If tooth enamel is weakened due to excess wear and tear from nail-biting, it could ultimately lead to tooth decay and cavities.

  • Chewing ice

If you chew ice, you could be damaging your teeth and your oral health. In addition to causing chipped teeth, chewing on ice can chip or crack the protective outer layer of your teeth called enamel. Enamel is the hardest tissue in the body, but it cannot repair itself if it’s broken. Once the damage is done, you may also have sensitive teeth to hot and cold temperatures for a while.

Since ice is hard in texture, it can wear down your natural teeth over time and make them more susceptible to decay. It can also create small cracks in the surfaces of your teeth that are susceptible to bacteria that can cause cavities. When you eat ice, you are also disrupting saliva production in your mouth, which can expose your gums to the acid from foods and drinks that can lead to gum disease.

To help prevent these issues, try quitting the habit of chewing ice cubes. You should also avoid chewing on hard items like pencils or pens that can fracture teeth and injure gum tissue.

At Midtown Dental, we provide tips and solutions that will improve your oral health while transforming smiles. Visit our office, Midtown Dental, at 750 George Washington Way, Richland, WA, Suite 1 99352. You can also reach us at (509) 946-1678.


750 George Washington Way,
Richland, WA, Suite 1 99352

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