How do you keep a beautiful smile? That obviously starts with great oral hygiene, but brushing and flossing alone may not keep your teeth looking as perfect as possible. You may have habits that you don’t even realize are putting the health and appearance of your teeth in jeopardy. In this blog, Dr. Ashwini Bhave recaps some of the most harmful habits for you to review.
1. Chewing on Non-Edible Objects
Do you find yourself chewing on objects (pens, fingernails, etc.) during the day? This oral fixation may seem harmless, but it can prematurely wear at your enamel and lead to you cracking your teeth. Unless it’s a toothbrush or floss, keep non-food items out of your mouth!
2. Snacking Between Meals
How healthy are the snacks you eat? If you’re like most Americans, some of the most sugary and acidic foods you consume during the day come between meals. These are the same foods that promote cavities and enamel erosion.
During a full meal, your mouth creates more saliva, which helps to wash away the bacteria. With snacks, food bits that can eventually cause decay are liable to linger for longer. For the sake of your oral hygiene, it’s a good idea to limit most of your eating to breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
3. Smoking and Drinking
There are many reasons to avoid smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol, but let’s limit our scope to the effects these substances have on your teeth. Both activities can accelerate the yellowing of your teeth. Although vaping has become popular in recent years, it is not a great alternative, and has been linked to many oral health issues including gum disease.
4. Opening Packages with Your Teeth
How often do you use your teeth to pull off a clothing tag or open plastic wrap rather than finding scissors? While your teeth are strong, they are not meant to forcefully pull apart materials like plastic. Spare your teeth the strain and find a nearby cutting instrument like a knife for these tasks.
5. Teeth Grinding
Nearly one in 10 adults grind their teeth while they sleep. This condition, known as bruxism, can crack and wear down your teeth to an unhealthy extent. Stopping teeth grinding is not as simple as adjusting your habits, since you probably clench your jaw unconsciously. However, once you become aware of the problem, you should make it a priority to visit your dentist to protect your teeth with a night guard.
Undoing Previous Damage
If your teeth already have some aesthetic flaws, the good news is that you do not need to learn to live with this damage. Bay Area Dental Specialists offer many cosmetic and reconstructive procedures that can help to make your teeth whiter and stronger. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Bhave, please call (408) 809-7760.