You may think you’re taking excellent care of your teeth by brushing and flossing on a regular basis and seeing the dentist as often as you’re supposed to, but then not be aware of the fact that some everyday habits can seriously harm your oral health. We don’t mean to scare you! We just know how common it is for these common actions to slip by unnoticed, and we want them to at least be on your radar so you can protect your smile.
1. Nail Biting
Nail biting comes along with a list of potential dental concerns. The germs from your nails could harm your oral health, the frequent position you have to put your teeth in to bite down on your nails can negatively affect your jaw, and the action may cause your front teeth to chip, crack, or endure unnecessary wear.
2. Chewing Ice
Ice is just water, so that can’t be bad for your teeth, right? In this case, it’s not so much what ice is made out of but how hard it is. Teeth may be pretty durable, but chewing on a hard material like ice can cause chips, cracks, or just plain enamel damage.
3. Teeth Grinding
If you deal with a lot of stress or you have a condition called bruxism, you may grind your teeth on a regular basis without even realizing it. Many times, this occurs while people are sleeping so it makes it even more difficult to notice unless a dentist sees the enamel damage or you take note of signs like morning headaches or jaw pain. The grinding can lead to long-term enamel damage to your teeth.
4. Teeth As a Tool
Have you ever tried to open a package with your teeth? Or maybe you have a party trick where you open a bottle with your teeth. Beware! Yes, teeth are tools in the sense that we use them to chew our food, but not THAT kind of tool. The pressure from trying to open things with your teeth can lead to serious dental injuries.
Okay, this one isn’t necessarily so much for adults as it is something you should keep an eye on with your children. Thumbsucking seems harmless, but the consistent pressure and position of the thumb can end up actually negatively changing the alignment of teeth, sometimes even to the point that orthodontic treatment is necessary.
Healthy Smiles at Smiles Dental
If you’d love to get more dental tips from the Smiles Dental team, feel free to shoot us an email or give us a call. One of our team members would be happy to give you plenty of additional information about how to enjoy a happy, healthy smile.