5 Bad Habits That Lead to Poor Oral Health
Let’s be honest – we all have them!
Unfortunately, though, your habits might be doing damage to the health of your smile.
If you have any of these habits, talk to us here at the office of Maryland Heights dentist Dr. Kevin Burgdorf. We can work with you to create a plan to break these habits and restore your health.
- Smoking: This is always number one in just about any bad habit list, isn’t it? Unfortunately, in addition to the negative effects smoking can have on your lungs, heart, and several other systems of your body, smoking also does a serious number on your oral health. Smoking is linked to periodontal disease and oral cancer, and it also slows down your body’s ability to heal following a procedure. Not to mention the dark color it turns your teeth and the associated bad breath!
- Nail biting: Many people who bite their nails are more concerned about the damage this habit is doing to their nails and cuticles, but chewing on items that aren’t food (including ice and objects like pencils) can easily lead to chips, cracks, and extra wear on your teeth.
- Using your teeth as a tool: Have you ever attempted to open something that was stuck by biting down on it? As you might have guessed, this is a pretty bad idea. We see a lot of damage done to teeth that could have been easily prevented. If you have trouble opening a bottle or other package, get a bottle opener or a pair of scissors!
- Teeth grinding: Most of us tend to clench our jaw or grit our teeth when we feel upset or stressed. Done occasionally, this isn’t a huge deal. For some people, however, this habit can become a chronic condition known as bruxism – and it can do serious damage to your teeth. At your regular appointments, we’ll check your teeth for signs of damage that might be caused by grinding and clenching. Since this problem frequently occurs at night, check with your partner to see if you grind your teeth, especially if you wake up with a headache or pain in your jaw.
- Frequent snacking: Constantly snacking isn’t just trouble for your waistline; it also contributes to problems with your oral health. Even if you think you are making healthy choices by eating fruits or whole-grain foods, you are still bathing your teeth in sugars and acids throughout the day, which significantly increases your risk of cavities. Eating filling, well-balanced meals will help you feel fuller longer and reduce your urge to snack. If you do enjoy a sweet treat, brush or rinse your mouth with water to help eliminate leftover traces of sugar.
Contact Your Dentist
Call our Bridgeton, MO dental office to set up your next dental cleaning and exam! We will be happy to offer advice and help you down the road to oral health.