Do you sometimes find yourself engaging in bad dental health habits like chewing ice, biting your nails, or even brushing your teeth too hard? Patient health and safety is our priority here at Alexander & Greenberg Comprehensive, General and Implant Dentistry. Our entire Jacksonville, FL dental office understands how important it is to build good oral health habits. These bad habits may not seem so bad on their own, but they can lead to serious issues like swollen gums, bleeding gums, or even cracked teeth. Let’s talk about how to break these bad oral health habits.
Biting Your Nails
Nail biting is a common habit that many people don’t even realize they have. While nail biting is usually the result of stress in your life, it can cause stress for your jaw and may chip the teeth, depending on the pressure used and whether your teeth are already fragile due to an underlying condition. Also, when you bite your nails, you protrude your jaw at an unnatural angle which may cause headaches and discomfort. Addressing stress with relaxation techniques, therapy and/or medication can help avoid the habit and help you feel better overall.
Chewing Ice Cubes or Hard Objects
Did you know that even though ice melts pretty quickly, it is very hard and can still crack or break teeth if chewed? A broken tooth is even more likely if you have a filling or a crown. These teeth have already been compromised and are not designed to handle extreme forces like ice. Also be careful of chewing hard candies or mints and allow them to melt in your mouth instead of chewing on them to make them smaller. You can avoid tooth sensitivity and tooth fracture by avoiding chewing on ice.
Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard
Teeth are strong, but remember that the gums are more sensitive and should be treated gently. Prolonged forceful brushing of teeth may lead to bleeding or swollen gums, which might cause you to suspect you have gum disease when it’s merely from brushing too hard. This habit can also lead to a receding gum line which exposes your roots and can make your teeth extra sensitive and more vulnerable to infections at the roots. Use an ADA-approved soft bristle toothbrush with an ADA-approved toothpaste to keep your gums healthy.
Jacksonville, FL Dentist
If you find that your habits are leading to tooth damage, or you have other pressing dental concerns, contact us by calling 904.901.4302. You may also schedule an appointment with our team online.