Many people tend to neglect their oral health because of their busy schedules or because they want to look their best. However, it is essential to take care of your teeth and gums, and mouth. Listed below are a few bad habits that can damage your oral health.
Even though snacking between meals can keep you feeling full, you're also likely to eat unhealthy snacks like potato chips or candy that's full of added sugars. Foods that are high in sugar and starch can increase your risk for tooth decay, so it's best to stick to healthy snacks that aren't high in sugar. Healthy snack options include cheese sticks, celery and carrot sticks, dried fruit, unsalted nuts, air-popped popcorn, hummus, and single-serve Greek yogurt cups. These foods promote the production of saliva in your mouth that can neutralize acid levels and wash away food particles, both of which can lower your risk of cavities.
If you get a tongue or lip piercing, you could chip a tooth or irritate your gums when you chew. Light barbells and studs are less likely to cause problems than heavier ones. Talk to your dentist if you have concerns about your oral piercings.
Smoking is one of the most significant contributors to gum disease and tooth loss. Tobacco use affects the body's ability to heal itself, and it can also reduce saliva production. Both of these factors make smoking a major risk factor for oral health problems. In fact, smokers are twice as likely to develop periodontal disease as non-smokers. This dental health risk is only made worse by the fact that tobacco use is linked to many other health conditions as well. Quitting smoking can improve your oral health by reducing your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. It can also improve your whole body's health by helping you avoid other serious health problems like cancer, lung disease, heart disease, and more.
If you've developed a serious addiction to tobacco, it's best to work with your dentist or doctor to quit using tobacco products for good. In addition to offering tips for quitting, your doctor or dentist can discuss medications or other treatments that can help you overcome your addiction.
Although nail biting may seem harmless, it can actually do a lot of damage to your teeth over time. It can lead to several oral health issues, such as:
If you're constantly thinking about biting your nails, then it's best to try to stop the habit before you develop any serious problems. Try to use a distraction to keep your mind off of wanting to bite your nails. You can keep your hands busy by playing with stress balls or doing other activities with your hands. You might also want to consider wearing gloves to prevent yourself from biting your fingernails. Another option is to apply bitter-tasting nail polish to your nails. This will help discourage you from biting your nails by giving you a bad taste in your mouth. You can even find certain anti-nail-biting liquids that are applied directly to nails to make them taste bad.
Eating ice is a bad habit that can damage your oral and overall health. You may notice your teeth becoming more sensitive after you've started crunching on ice. This is because chewing on the ice can cause enamel abrasions. If you continue to chew on hard substances and foods, it can lead to more serious issues such as periodontal disease.
Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is a condition that occurs when a patient clenches his or her teeth while sleeping. Over time, this can lead to sore jaws and worn-down teeth. If you suffer from bruxism or suspect that you do, be sure to contact us as soon as possible for treatment options. While there is no cure for bruxism, we can recommend a few different options to help reduce or eliminate the habit. A mouth guard can be worn at night to protect your teeth from the damage caused by teeth clenching. If your jaw is sore in the morning due to teeth grinding, we may recommend more frequent use of warm salt water rinses to ease discomfort and massage your jaw muscles. Feel free to ask us about how these options can help you stop tooth-grinding in your home!
If you've always been told to brush your teeth twice a day, and that technique worked for you for years, don't stop now! However, if you've found yourself pushing or pulling your brush with more force than necessary in an effort to scrub away stains, you may want to reevaluate your routine altogether. While regular brushing keeps your smile bright, overdoing it can cause damage to the enamel and cause enamel erosion.
If you’d like to know more about oral health tips, call (925) 847-8790 to schedule an appointment. You can also directly visit us at 5720 Stoneridge Mall Rd #200, Pleasanton, CA 94588, for all your dental health concerns.