Gust Blog: 8 Silly Habits that Seriously Harm Your Teeth

Wednesday 30 July 2014

For those who love to keep their pleasant and healthy smile, maintaining good dental habits is as crucial as avoiding detrimental oral habits.

You brush and floss your teeth regularly so your mouth does not become a nice breeding place for germs. You know that following oral hygiene basics will keep dental problems at bay. But you might still have some bad oral habits that undermine your excellent oral hygiene routines.

Have a look at below list and do a quick self-check:

1. Treating Your Teeth like Tools

A lot of people use their teeth as tools to open bottles, tear off a plastic tape, or rip a bag of chips. Our teeth are not meant to be used this way. It can have a traumatic effect on the teeth, weakening and then chipping them off gradually. Use the right tools for certain things and reserve your teeth for biting and chewing only food, as they are built for that.

2. Chewing Ice Habitually

Some people crush ice cubes with their teeth out of habit. If you are guilty of regularly crunching cold and hard ice without a thought, remind yourself of its harmful effect. If you have a filling, habitual chewing of ice can crack or chip off that part which leads to something severe, such as a root canal treatment. Let the ice melt and suppress the urge to bite it while it is extremely hard and cold.

3. Using Your Teeth to Chew on Hard Objects

Not just ice, sometimes out of habit, people chew on pencils, pens and other hard objects. This can either cause fracture on your teeth or shock the nerves within, which can lead to dental repairs – expenses you could have avoided with proper dental care.

4. Lemon Sucking

If you tend to suck lemons regularly – listen up.  Sucking lemons can erode minerals from your teeth causing them to weaken. Lemons and other fruits with citric acid can cause damage and discolouration to the enamel of your teeth. If your teeth are weakened, they become sensitive to cold drinks and food, and in worst cases, they would need restorative treatment, e.g. dental veneers or other cosmetic procedure.  You do not have to panic and abruptly stop eating or drinking citrus-based fruits and juices, just make sure that you do not keep them in your mouth for a long time. If possible, brush your teeth right after consuming them.

5. Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard

It is a wrong notion to brush your teeth with great pressure.  Similarly, using a bristle that is too hard for your gums and teeth is harmful rather than helpful. Cleaning your teeth with hard-bristled toothbrush can wear down the protective enamel, which leads to receding gums and increased tooth sensitivity. Opt for soft-bristled toothbrush and do not apply too much pressure when brushing.

6. Biting Your Nails

Did you know that biting your nails is not just bad for your nails but also for your teeth? This habit only causes your tooth enamel to chip or fracture. In addition, this practice allows germs from your nails to enter your mouth and body, leading to various diseases. It could also cause teeth misalignment and temporomandibular disorder (jaw movement problem).

7. Grinding Your Teeth

Teeth grinding is a bad habit. It can lead to serious dental problems such as chips, cracks, and fractures. Another effect can be pain in the jaw joints, headache and worse, toothache! Teeth grinding may be an involuntary action, which occurs while you’re asleep.  Dentists would usually suggest wearing a mouth guard before going to bed. If this persists, see your dentist and ask him to recommend a trusted otolaryngologist.

8. Excessive Soda Drinking

A lot of people are guilty of this. Not only is this bad for your health (sugar overload), but also for your teeth. Because soft drinks are sweetened and carbonated, they can easily cause tooth decay. The acids present in soft drinks never do anything good; instead, they promote the formation of cavities. If avoiding soda is not an option, rinse your mouth with water or gargle a mouthwash after drinking soft drinks.

Never underestimate the harmful effects of bad dental habits. If you don’t overlook these risks, you are sure to cut dental-related bills and most importantly, keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Disclaimer: This article is contributed by a Guest Blogger. Ping of Health does not give any warranty on accuracy, completeness, functionality, usefulness or other assurances as to the content appearing in this article. Ping of Health disclaims all responsibility for any losses, damage or personal injury suffered directly or indirectly from reliance on such information.