Bad Habits That Can Damage Oral Health

Bad Habits That Can Damage Oral Health

Posted by Lakeview Dental on Nov 8 2022, 11:00 PM

We all have habits. Some are good, while others are bad. When it comes to our dental health, some bad dental habits are so common that you might not even realize they are hurting your teeth!

  • Grinding Your Teeth

Bruxism is one of the most common bad oral habits, and excessive grinding of the teeth can lead to both cosmetic issues and more serious complications. Even moderate cases of bruxism can eventually take a toll on your oral health, so it’s important to find ways to reduce or eliminate the habit. One effective way to stop yourself from clenching or grinding your teeth is to use an oral appliance such as a night guard. These are customized to fit your mouth comfortably, and they work by cushioning your upper and lower teeth so that they can’t touch when you’re sleeping. 

  • Using Teeth As Tools

Biting nails, pencils, or ice cubes can harm your oral health. Your teeth are not tools; they are part of the delicate oral system that helps you speak and chew. Putting too much pressure on your teeth can cause damage, such as chips, broken teeth, and more! If you are someone who uses their teeth as a biting tool, contact our office today to learn how we can help repair the damage that has been done to your mouth.

  • Nail Biting

Many adults bite their nails in times of worry or nervousness. However, biting your nails can cause damage to your oral health and result in broken teeth. If your teeth are already damaged due to nail biting, it is best to talk with your dentist about your options to restore your smile.

In addition to damaging your teeth and gums, nail biting can result in painful conditions, including temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ). TMJ is the term used to describe pain in your jaw or face caused by problems with the joints in your jaw. This can become worse over time and may make it difficult to bite and chew food.

  • Smoking

Cigarettes and other forms of tobacco can wreak havoc on oral health, including bad breath and the buildup of plaque or tartar on the teeth. Tobacco products contain chemicals such as nicotine and tar, which coat the teeth with thin layers. Over time, these substances will start to cause teeth to become discolored as well as leave an unpleasant odor in the mouth. Cigarette smoking can also lead to gum disease and gum recession due to the inflammation and irritation of the oral tissues caused by the chemicals in cigarettes. Gum disease is one of the most significant causes of tooth loss in adults between the ages of 30-40 years old.

Additionally, smoking can contribute to dry mouth syndrome. A dry mouth is a common side effect of many medications, but it can also be caused by smoking cigarettes too frequently. This condition is not just uncomfortable but can also be dangerous because saliva helps to wash away food debris and prevent cavities. A lack of saliva can also result in the buildup of bacteria along the teeth and irritate the tongue and gums. Smokers tend to experience more severe side effects of dry mouth because they are often dehydrated from the habit as well. These symptoms can include dry lips, sore throats, and even bad breath.

Schedule an appointment with Lakeview Dental to learn more about a family dentist. Visit us at 801 Milwaukee Dr., Coeur D'Alene, ID 83814. Contact us at (208) 664-0884 or visit our website for more information. 

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801 Milwaukee Dr., Coeur D'Alene, ID 83814

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