Are you participating in bad habits harming your teeth? Take a look at the six worst habits and how you can attempt to break them!
- Nail Biting – This poor habit can chip your teeth and impact your jaw. To break it, try bitter-tasting nail polishes, stress reduction, and setting small, realistic goals.
- Brushing too Hard – You should be brushing for two minutes twice daily. However, if you’re brushing with a hard toothbrush or brushing too hard in general, you can damage your teeth and irritate your gums. Try using a soft toothbrush and brush a bit softer. Don’t think “scrub” and instead think “massage.”
- Grinding and Clenching – This habit causes chipping and cracking of your teeth. It can also cause muscle tenderness or joint pain. To break this, try relaxation exercises. Being aware of the problem is incredibly helpful. If you grind your teeth at night, try using a mouth guard when you sleep. You’ll increase the amount of sleep you’re getting while decreasing the amount of damage on your teeth and muscles.
- Chewing Ice Cubes – Your tooth enamel is a crystal. Ice is also a crystal. Pushing two crystals together is going to cause one to break. Typically it is the ice, but sometimes you can break a tooth or a filling. To avoid chewing ice, try to drink a beverage that is chilled without ice OR use a straw so you’re not tempted.
- Constant Snacking – Constantly munching, especially on sugary foods and drinks, puts you at a much higher risk for cavities. To curb this bad habit, eat balanced meals to feel fuller, longer. If you are going to have a snack, ensure that it is low in fat and sugar. If you do indulge on the occasional sugary treat, follow it with a big glass of water to help wash away leftover food.
- Using your Teeth as Tools – Your teeth were made for eating, not as a pair of scissors or to hold things when your hands are full. To curb this, think about what you’re doing. Stop to find something or someone to give you a hand if it’s needed.
If you have any questions, please call us at 610-489-5555.