It seems like there is always a lot of focus on what to do to take care of your teeth, but let’s talk for a minute about what not to do. There are several everyday habits that are harmful for your teeth. Some habits to avoid include:
Nail biting/Using teeth to open things
Biting your nails can be harmful for your teeth because it can cause them to chip. It is also not good to have your jaw protruding outward for long periods of time because it can cause jaw pain. Using your teeth to open things, rip tags off, etc. can have the same effect.
If you have weak enamel or weakened tooth structure from a previous restoration chomping down on ice can cause a tooth to break. Breaking a tooth is never good because it can lead to a root canal if the pulp is exposed.
Grinding your teeth
Grinding your teeth at night causes misalignment of your teeth and can also cause headaches or jaw pain. If you think you might be grinding your teeth ask your dentist for his/her advice. Usually wearing a night guard is recommended.
Brushing too hard with a stiff bristle brush
Everyone should be brushing for 2 minutes twice a day; but don’t overdo it. If you are brushing as suggested there is no reason to brush super hard. Brushing too hard can lead to receding gums and then sensitivity. Try to get a soft bristle toothbrush rather than one that is too hard to avoid irritating the gums.
Snacking throughout the day
Eating snacks constantly throughout the day (especially sugary foods) puts you at higher risk for cavities since the food sits on your teeth all day. If you do have occasional snacks try to drink a glass of water after to wash away the leftover foods and always brush before bedtime.
Smoking causes numerous health problems but as far as your oral health smoking cause’s bad breath, tooth discoloration, dry mouth and plaque buildup around your teeth. Smokers are also at higher risk for developing gum disease and oral cancer.