It’s normal for your teeth encounter some general wear and tear over the years, but there are certain habits and activities that can speed this up and even cause you to encounter a dental emergency. For many habits, the correlation is obvious, but for others, you may not even realize that you’re doing anything wrong. Your dentist shares some of the worst daily activities for your smile. Don’t do these things if you want to prevent future oral health issues.
Did you know that over half of Americans over the age of 18 drink at least one cup of coffee each day? Even though it is a great way to start out a productive day, it isn’t the best liquid for your teeth. In addition to causing discoloration due to tannins, coffee is slightly acidic which contributes to tooth decay.
This nervous habit is quite common. You are bringing additional bacteria and viruses in your mouth while also posing risks to your teeth. It can cause your teeth to crack or chip as well as putting unnecessary stress on your jaw by keeping it in a protruded position.
Brushing Too Hard
You may feel like you’re removing more plaque by brushing harder, but the truth is that it can actually cause harm to both your teeth and the soft tissues in your mouth. You can wear away your protective enamel and cause gum recession, which isn’t reversable. Remember to always use a soft-bristled toothbrush and use short strokes.
Using Your Teeth as Tools
Your teeth have many functions. They help you chew, keep saliva in your mouth, allow you to speak clearly, and you use them to smile. However, using your teeth to rip open stubborn packaging or pop open bottles is never a good idea. You could easily damage your smile.
Chewing on Ice
Did you know that both ice and your enamel are crystals? When you put them together, one is bound to break. Even though it is usually the ice that breaks, it only takes one unlucky munch down on ice for you to break your tooth. This is definitely a habit to discontinue. Try drinking your beverages without ice or using a straw to resist the temptation.
Grinding your teeth and tensing up your jaw can cause all sorts of damage to your smile. It can even cause facial and jaw pain. Many people don’t even realize that they do it because it commonly occurs during sleep. Mouthguards can be provided by your dentist to prevent this everyday act that hurts your teeth.
If you find that you are doing any of these things on a daily basis, make sure that you are taking steps to stop. By being aware of these harmful habits, you can work towards maintaining a healthy smile.
About the Author
After attending dental school in India and working as an associate dentist for three years, Dr. Raj Vekariya moved to the United States and earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery from New York University’s College of Dentistry. For more information on maintaining a healthy smile or to schedule an appointment at his office in Canonsburg, visit his website or call (724) 300-3700.