The following are some unhealthy oral habits that you would be wise to drop as soon as possible.
- Toothpicks – While these little marvels may be effective for removing food particles, they often cause food to be wedged deeper between the teeth. In addition a slip or sudden movement can lead to damaged gums and/or lips.
- Chewing ice – Ice is hard and brittle.This in itself is enough to chip or crack teeth. Fillings and teeth are further adversely affected by the expansion and contraction that occurs with the sudden temperature change. The extremes in temperature may affect nerve endings in already sensitive teeth and lead to extreme discomfort.
- Nail biting – Persistent nail biting causes excessive wear on teeth,lacerated gums, micro-fractures in teeth, spread of skin infections from the hand to the mouth and in severe cases misalignment of teeth.
- Sucking lemons – Although that little piece of fruit at the bottom of the glass looks inviting-resist the temptation. The citric acid can remove important minerals from the teeth and lead to the erosion of the enamel. Over time teeth may develop tiny grooves or they may soften making them prone to chipping.
- Using your teeth as tools – We’ve all run into the problem of packages wrapped in plastic with the seeming intent that they never be opened. Unfortunately, teeth are just too convenient. Instead of reaching for a scissors or a knife we trust our teeth which can lead to damaged tissues and/or teeth. The same thing happens when we use our teeth in lieu of a bottle opener. In a word…DON’T.
Eliminating these unhealthy oral habits may save you unnecessary pain and an unscheduled visit to the dental office.