Posted On: December 1, 2015

8 Bad Habits That Damage Your Teeth

You might be indulging in certain habits and you might not even be aware of their devastating effect on your teeth. Learn more about these bad habits in order to avoid them.

Even though you might enjoy them and perhaps don’t think that they can be harmful, some bad habits can have a negative impact on your teeth. Sometimes it’s hard to give these habits up, but it’s absolutely necessary if you want to keep and maintain a beautiful white smile. Avoid these bad habits in order to preserve your teeth:

Chewing on Ice

Ice is natural and completely sugarless, so you might think that it is harmless. But chewing on frozen, hard cubes of ice can chip or even crack your teeth. Regular toothaches may follow if this habit ends up irritating soft tissue inside the tooth. As a result, hot and cold foods may cause sharp pain or a lingering toothache. Try chewing sugar-free gum instead.

Bedtime Bottles

Protecting teeth from day one is imperative. Giving babies bedtime bottles of formula, milk, or juice may prove to be a problem later on. Babies can get used to falling asleep with the bottle in their mouths, which covers their teeth with sugars throughout the entire night. Keep the bottles out of the crib.

Grinding Your Teeth

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, can wear teeth down over a period of time. It is usually caused by sleeping habits and stress, which unfortunately makes it hard to control. Try avoiding hard foods during the day, which might reduce damage and pain caused by this habit. Also, wearing a mouth guard overnight will help protect your teeth from grinding while asleep.

Gummy Bears

Not just bears, of course. While all sugar candy raises the risk of tooth decay, gummy candy is notorious for sticking to your teeth for hours. Bacteria feed on the sugar and produce acids that damage tooth enamel. If you cannot avoid eating these treats, make sure to drink water afterwards, which will help wash the sugar off your teeth.

Opening Things with Your Teeth

You may think that opening plastic packaging or bottle caps with your teeth is useful, but this nasty habit can cause your teeth to crack or chip. Use scissors and bottle openers instead. Your teeth are designed for eating, not to be used as a utility tool.

Potato Chips

Sugar is not the only thing that causes problems for your teeth. Bacteria breaks down starchy foods such as potato chips into acid that attacks your teeth for at least 20 minutes, probably longer if pieces of it get stuck between your teeth. You should floss after eating starchy foods that might get stuck between your teeth.

Chewing on Pencils

People often chew on pencils when they are trying to concentrate on work or studies. Just like munching on ice cubes, this habit can cause your tooth to crack or chip. Again, sugar-free gum is a much better option as it causes saliva flow, which makes your teeth stronger and protects them against acids that damage tooth enamel.

Smoking

All tobacco products, such as cigarettes, can cause teeth stains. Smoking can even cause teeth to fall out as a result of gum disease. Tobacco can also cause mouth, lip, and tongue cancer. There are plenty of reasons to quit smoking, your smile is just one of them.

Avoid these habits and practice regular oral hygiene and you too will have a beautiful, bright smile. If you cannot entirely stop some of these habits, use some of the tips provided here to at least lessen their effect.

Call our Las Vegas, NV (Henderson, NV) office. Why wait until tomorrow for a smile you can have today?