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Are These 5 Habits Causing Poor Dental Hygiene?

2017 is a brand new year, and it’s time to make some positive life changes. Did you know that one great way to enhance your health is to start taking better care of your pearly whites? That’s right – poor dental hygiene is associated with a number of serious health problems including (but not limited to) cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even dementia.

If you want to step up your dental hygiene this year, it’s time to drop some of your bad habits! What are some of the worst habits people have when it comes to their teeth? Let’s take a look.

Clenching or Grinding

It’s not uncommon for a person to clench or grind their teeth at night, or when they are stressed, but this habit is very damaging. Failure to address clenching or grinding could result in tooth wear, jaw pain, fractures, loose teeth, and much more. Talk to your dentist about a mouthguard if you are noticing jaw soreness in the morning!

Nail Biting

Nail biting is a fairly typical nervous habit, but it’s not natural for our teeth. Excessive nail biting can cause a chipped tooth or tooth fractures. Plus, our nails are full of germs and bacteria that may lead to bad breath or cavities. It’s time to stop your nail biting today!

Ice Chewing

Chewing on ice may feel nice, but it’s a cruel trick. Ice is very hard and sharp, and chewing on it may cause enamel fractures, gum injury, or even a completely broken tooth! This habit is especially dangerous to those who have recently had dental work done and to those with sensitive teeth. If ice chewing is a severe problem for you, you may have an iron deficiency. Be sure to consult with a doctor if you are concerned about this habit.

Poor Brushing Technique

Brushing your teeth isn’t rocket science, yet many people still do it incorrectly. Using a brush that is too hard, brushing with too much force, or brushing too often can be damaging over time. Correct brushing should be done with a brush that has soft to medium bristle strength. Whisk your toothbrush gently over tooth surfaces two times a day if you would like to improve your brushing technique.

Foods and Beverages

Last but not least, let’s talk about the foods and beverages that are harming your teeth. Sugary or acidic foods or beverages greatly increase the risk of tooth decay. Saliva neutralizes the acid levels within our mouth to prevent bacteria from growing. Too much sugar or acid prevents saliva from being able to do its job. If you want to make big changes in your dental hygiene this year, it’s time to cut back on sodas, coffees, and sugary foods. It won’t be easy – but it will be worth it!

Have you visited your dentist lately? Start 2017 on the right path. Schedule an appointment for your yearly checkup today!