Bad Habits That Can Harm Your Oral Health

Bad Habits That Can Harm Your Oral Health

Posted by DENTAL CONCEPTS on Nov 15 2022, 09:51 PM

Bad Habits That Can Harm Your Oral Health

Your oral health is closely linked to your overall health. If you are suffering from any oral disease, it can cause other health problems as well. There are several oral health habits that can damage our teeth' enamel. Here are some of them. 

  • Smoking

Tobacco use is damaging to all of the body's systems, including the mouth. Cigarettes and other forms of tobacco can cause bad breath, tooth discoloration, tooth loss, and gum disease. People who smoke have more plaque on their teeth than nonsmokers. Plaque is a sticky film that contains germs that can cause tooth decay and gum disease. Furthermore, smokers have an increased risk of developing oral cancer. Quitting is the best thing you can do to protect your oral and overall health.

  • Teeth Grinding

While many people grind or clench their teeth occasionally during the day or while sleeping, others may do it more frequently. This bad habit, sometimes called "bruxism," can wear down teeth and lead to other problems like jaw pain, headaches, and even hearing loss. Stress and anxiety are common causes of bruxism, though alcohol and caffeine can also contribute to it. To relieve symptoms associated with bruxism, try reducing your stress and practicing good sleep habits. Night guards can also help protect your teeth from wear caused by excessive grinding.

  • Chewing Ice

Many people enjoy chewing on ice. Though this may seem like an innocent habit, chewing on ice can damage the teeth by causing cracked teeth and broken fillings. If you do chew on ice, quit it at the earliest. 

  • Nail Biting

We've all done it—bitten our nails at some point or another. However, this bad habit can be quite dangerous to oral health. Not only can it damage your fingernails, but it can cause chipped or broken teeth. 

  • Using Teeth As Tools

While it might be more convenient to use your teeth for things like opening packages or tearing tags off new clothes, this habit can lead to chipped, cracked, or broken teeth. Not only can these chips be painful and uncomfortable, but they can also develop into larger problems if left untreated.

  • Aggressive Brushing

Aggressive brushing can erode enamel and irritate gums. This can lead to gum disease and cavities. To brush your teeth effectively without causing damage to your teeth, use a soft-bristled toothbrush. A soft brush is less likely to damage the teeth or gum tissues. Also, consider replacing your toothbrush every three to four months. Worn bristles can be less effective than fresh ones. Gently brush along the gum line at a 45-degree angle. Tilting the toothbrush slightly allows the bristles to get below the gum line. If the bristles are up too high on the gums, they can push the gums away from the teeth and cause a recession. Always move the toothbrush in a gentle back-and-forth motion. Avoid sawing back and forth with the brush because it can damage the gum line and create pockets where plaque can develop.

If you wish to learn more about our dental procedures, please schedule an online appointment or call us at (773) 374-9778 for Chicago and (708) 914-4381 for Homewood to have a consultation with Dr. Moore, and we will be happy to help.

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