Nail biting, smoking, excessive brushing, teeth grinding, using teeth as tools, and neglecting to visit the dentist regularly are some of the bad habits that can damage our oral health.
A few bad habits can hurt your smile, and smoking tops the list. If you are a smoker, not only are you more susceptible to oral cancer, gum disease, tooth loss, and other painful issues, but you are also at risk for tooth discoloration, staining, and even damage to the gum tissues. These effects can cause you to feel self-conscious about your teeth and may even cause you to lose self-confidence in your smile.
In addition to stains caused by tobacco, cigarettes can also contribute to bad breath due to crunchy particles that can lodge in the teeth and cause odor. Additionally, those who smoke tend to suffer from dry mouth more often than non-smokers, which can lead to an increased risk of decay and other problems. Those who smoke are also more likely to grind or clench their teeth at night, which can wear away the enamel faster than necessary and lead to sensitivity and pain. As you can see, there are many reasons to quit this habit for good! If you need help quitting the habit, contact our office to schedule your consultation today. We are happy to help you learn more about how you can improve both the health and appearance of your smile.
- Aggressive Brushing
When we brush our teeth, we should be gentle with them and use only a soft-bristled toothbrush. We should be brushing for at least two minutes each time as well to ensure we’re reaching every surface of the tooth. Rough brushing can cause enamel abrasions or even damage the gums by loosening them from the teeth. This could lead to periodontitis or gingivitis. Those conditions can eventually lead to tooth loss if left untreated. So, we recommend brushing your teeth twice a day using a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste.
- Nail Biting
Maybe you bite your nails when you’re nervous, or maybe it’s just a bad habit that you’ve had since you were a child. Whatever the case may be, we completely understand. It can be a difficult habit to break because it is both an unconscious and repetitive action. However, nail biting can lead to a range of oral health issues, including chipped or broken teeth, bacteria buildup, and a misaligned jaw. Nail biting can also leave your teeth sensitive and prone to pain. If you or your child bites their nails, try cutting the nails short until the habit is broken. If you have concerns or questions about this bad habit, contact our team today! We will be more than happy to help you find a solution that works for you.
- Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding is a destructive habit that causes a wide range of oral health problems in addition to headaches and earaches. It can wear down our tooth enamel until we’re left with sensitive teeth that are more susceptible to tooth decay. Additionally, if we grind our teeth too frequently at night, we can even wake up with jaw pain or even migraines. If you have trouble with nighttime teeth grinding, talk to your dentist about using a mouth guard to protect your teeth from damage each night.
- Using Teeth As Tools
In addition to tooth damage from chewing on objects like pencils or fingernails, we also risk chipping or breaking a tooth by using it as a tool to open a bottle cap or crack open a nut. The same can be said for using teeth to cut things – scissors are a much safer option!
- Skipping Regular Dental Visits
One of the best ways we can improve our smiles is by having regular visits to the dentist for checkups and cleanings. If we only see our dentists when something is wrong, we’ll end up waiting too long in between visits to address problems that could have been avoided. However, proactive care allows us to stop issues before they even begin, keeping our smiles healthy and beautiful for years to come.
To learn more about good oral hygiene habits, call (719) 471-1900 or schedule an online consultation. You can also visit Dentist in Colorado Springs, CO, at 1705 N Weber St, Colorado Springs, CO 80907.