The best way to prevent chips, breaks, and sensitivity is to treat your teeth with care. There are many ways people mistreat their teeth without meaning to, and even the most diligent brushing and flossing won’t protect you from the consequences. To take better care of your teeth, break these bad habits and make sure to attend your routine cleanings and examinations.
At Fayette Dental Group, serving patients in Fayetteville, Georgia, and the surrounding area, Dr. Charley Cheney and his team of experienced dental specialists provide family dentistry and preventive care to help you keep your teeth healthy and strong.
7 bad habits to avoid
In many cases, sensitivity and damage to the enamel on your teeth are caused by wear-and-tear or a sudden accident. If you want to maintain your teeth and avoid breakage, watch for these bad habits in your day-to-day life.
1. Chewing on pencils
It’s not uncommon for children and adults to chew on the ends of pens or pencils, especially while you’re thinking. If you find yourself orally fixated when focused, try redirecting that energy by chewing sugar-free gum.
2. Brushing your teeth too hard
There is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Brushing too hard can wear away your enamel and gum tissue, leaving you at risk of tooth sensitivity and periodontal disease. While brushing, focus on making small, gentle circles rather than scrubbing your teeth clean.
3. Biting your nails
Biting your nails isn’t only bad for your nails, but it’s also bad for your teeth and jaw. When you bite through your nail, it puts pressure on your jaw and causes your teeth to click together. This increases your risk of chipping a tooth and can worsen conditions like temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.
4. Using your teeth as tools
This one seems obvious, but we all find ourselves using our teeth at some point anyway. Whether you’re trying to open a package or pop a bottle cap, you’re better off looking for a proper tool to do it with. Otherwise, you might end up with a broken tooth.
5. Playing sports unprotected
Football, hockey, lacrosse, basketball — any sport where you might take a ball or a body part to your face is worth wearing a mouthguard. Never play sports unprotected, even during practices and scrimmages.
6. Crunching on ice or candy
The satisfaction of crunching something isn’t worth breaking your teeth. If you have an unbreakable habit of snacking on ice or hard candy, at least be mindful and never try to crack anything that feels solid.
7. Grinding your teeth at night
Clenching and grinding your teeth is perhaps the most grievous offender on the list. Bruxism, or grinding while you sleep, causes damage to your enamel and increases your risk of TMJ disorders. Make sure to unclench your jaw whenever you feel stressed and invest in a fitted nightguard.
How preventive dentistry can help
Even if you break your bad habits and practice good dental hygiene, you still need routine cleanings and examinations to prevent tooth decay.
At Fayette Dental Group, Dr. Cheney offers exams, cleanings, sealants, and even nightguards to those looking to protect their teeth. Preventive dentistry works to prevent cavities and gum disease, rather than treating the issues once they’re in motion.
With regular visits to your dentist, you can stay on top of your oral health and prevent problems before they become uncomfortable. To schedule a consultation, call 770-683-2000 today, or request an appointment online anytime.