Even if you take great care of your mouth by brushing, flossing, and rinsing every day, if you participate in bad oral habits, it could still cause common problems such as cavities and gum disease to arise. Something that you’re used to doing every day could be causing your enamel to erode or bacteria to accumulate in your mouth. Read on to learn whether your habits are bad news for your mouth.
Using Your Teeth To Open Packages & Other Items
Instead of using scissors or a bottle opener, do you regularly use your teeth to open packages, rip tape off of a roll, or pop the cap off of a bottled beverage? Although this seems like the more convenient solution, it can destroy your tooth enamel and leave your pearly whites susceptible to the effects of harmful oral bacteria. This habit can also increase your chances of chipping, breaking, or fracturing a tooth, resulting in an unexpected visit to your emergency dentist.
Playing Contact Sports Without a Mouthguard
Even as an adult, it’s important to protect yourself while you play any type of contact sport or participate in an activity that could put your mouth at risk of becoming damaged. Research shows that athletes are about 60 times more likely to damage their teeth when they’re not wearing a protective mouthguard. Not only will you be able to avoid an emergency dental trip, but you’ll also reduce your risk of experiencing a tooth infection when you break your bad habit of not wearing your mouthguard.
Chewing the Ice at the Bottom of Your Drinks
Even though it can feel satisfying chewing on the ice at the bottom of your drinks, it can increase the likelihood of you damaging or breaking a tooth. If you have restorations including crowns, fillings, or replacement teeth, this can also put those at risk of cracking or failing.
Sucking on Throat Lozenges
Do you turn to throat lozenges as soon as you feel a cold or throat tingle coming on during flu season? Even though these can help numb the area and ease your discomfort, continually letting lozenges sit in your mouth can increase your risk of developing a cavity. These medicinal drops are known to contain high amounts of sugar, which feed harmful bacteria in your mouth and cause them to produce waste in the form of enamel-eroding acid and toxins that can infect the gums. Instead, try a throat spray.
Using Over-The-Counter Teeth Whitening Kits That Cause Irritation
Are you on a mission to achieve a beautiful whitened smile by using over-the-counter teeth whitening kits? Unfortunately, these products often don’t contain ingredients that are safe for your gums and oral tissues. If you continue using them after you experience irritation, it can result in severe complications including dental sensitivity. Instead, ask your cosmetic dentist about professional teeth whitening treatment, which only uses highly effective, trusted, and thoroughly tested ingredients that are completely safe for your mouth.
If you participate in any of these habits regularly, be sure to ask your dentist how they are impacting the health of your teeth and gums at your next checkup and cleaning. With the right preventive measures in place, you can preserve your natural teeth and prevent oral health problems from developing.
About the Author
Dr. Gary Nawrocki has decades of experience helping his patients optimize their oral health and prevent problems from occurring. He is a member of several professional organizations and is devoted to giving his patients extraordinary care. Whether his patients are visiting for a routine checkup and cleaning or an emergency visit, his team is highly trained and experienced, making every appointment fast and comfortable. For questions or to schedule a checkup and cleaning, visit Nawrocki Dental’s website or call 321-783-7514.