Let’s face it… you only have one set of teeth.
If you want your smile to last a lifetime, here are some habits that just might be wreaking havoc on those pearly whites.
Use your teeth as a tool? If you use your teeth to open bottles, or bite through papers, bags or plastics – stop it now! This bad habit can crack or break a tooth or ruin previous dental work.
Smoke or chew tobacco? Smoking is bad for your health, so it should be no surprise that cigarettes and chewing tobacco are also harmful to your oral health – including stained teeth and tongue, bad breath and increased risk of gum disease and oral cancer.
Chomp on ice? Who doesn’t love to chew on ice? Next time you think about doing it, remember that cold, hard ice cubes can cause damage to your teeth.
Drink a lot of soda? Drinking one or more sodas a day is like giving your teeth a bath in acid and decay-causing sugar. Water is your best choice.
Bite your nails? Not only is it an unsanitary habit, nail biting can cause your teeth to move out of place and damage tooth enamel.
Have tongue or lip piercings? Although they are becoming increasingly common – especially among younger people — piercing can be harmful to your teeth, fillings and gums.
Brush too hard? Many people brush vigorously and that can wear down enamel and irritate the gums. Brush gently, in circular motions for two minutes with a soft-bristle brush.
Love coffee? There’s nothing better than a cup of morning joe, but it can stain your teeth and damage the enamel. Try rinsing with water or brushing after coffee to keep your smiling white.
Eat lots of junk food? Starchy snacks like chips and pretzels can produce a buildup of partially chewed food between the teeth and bacteria love it! Try and make healthier choices and limit junk food when possible.
Grind your teeth? Excessive pressures from this habit can cause micro-fractures in your teeth, leading to additional dental problems. If you grind while sleeping consider using a mouth guard at night.
Have some habits to break? If you’re concerned about how they are affecting your teeth, call your dentist for a check-up before it’s too late.
Dr. Mike Mavrostomos is passionate about providing top-quality, comprehensive dental care. He is located in Bedminster, NJ whose continual pursuit of education and state-of-the-art dentistry has led to his being recognized as one of New Jersey’s Top Dentists by the New Jersey Top-Docs committee.