7 Habits That Can Ruin Your Teeth

July 24, 2017

Even if you’re regularly brushing and flossing your teeth, there is a big possibility you have certain habits that are ruining your pearly whites. Some are less and some more damaging, but if you want your teeth to be strong, healthy and white, you should try to break those habits and save them. Here are some of the most common habits that can ruin your teeth.

Nail biting

This nervous habit can have a big negative impact on your teeth and your jaw. Aside from the possibility of chipping your teeth, the protruding position of your jaw while biting nails is placing pressure on it and can cause jaw dysfunction. You can break this habit by using bitter nail polish and reducing stress. If you notice that certain situations trigger your nail-biting habit, try holding something to keep your fingers busy.

Teeth grinding

Teeth grinding is when you repeatedly slide your teeth back and forth over each other. Constant grinding can be a serious problem for teeth and especially for the temporomandibular joint, the joint that connects the jaw to the skull. Over time, this habit can cause teeth to break or fracture. The cause of teeth grinding is not completely clear, but experts cite stress as a major trigger. Because this habit often occurs during the night when you’re unconscious, it can be quite hard to break. Those who suffer from this harmful habit sometimes use nighttime grinding appliances (similar to sports mouth guards) that relax the jaw and prevent grinding. Also, physiotherapy and massage can help the jaw and facial muscles relax.


This harmful habit is not only bad for your teeth, but it’s a major cause of different types of cancer, heart disease, emphysema and painful lesions in the mouth. Tobacco use is also a frequent cause of tooth loss, receding gum lines, bad breath and yellow teeth in adults. Even though this is a habit that’s hard to break, the good news is that once you manage, the risk of all those negative effects goes down quickly. There are many products, therapies and tips that can help you stop smoking, you only need to have will.

Too much soda

Sugary drinks are very bad for your teeth because they promote the growth of bacteria. According to many types of research, it’s not the sugar that can do the most damage. Different acids found in both regular and diet sodas can damage your tooth enamel. Scientist measured the acidity in different drinks and their results say that sodas are more than half as acidic as battery acid! The best you can do when it comes to drinking soda is switch to water that has the acidity value of zero.

Constant snacking

In Australia, almost 15% of adults experienced toothaches in 2017, and most of those usually come from cavities. If you have a habit of snacking on sugary foods throughout the day, you have a higher risk of cavities development. Every time you eat, cavity-causing bacteria produce a type of acid that can attack the outer part of your teeth. The best thing to prevent that is by eating a balanced diet, so you can feel full for a longer time. If you still need a snack, opt for low-fat and low-sugar kind. If you don’t have a brush at hand, you can use a generous glass of water to wash away leftover food. As soon as you start suspecting you have cavities, you should make an appointment with an experienced dentist in Sydney who will take care of your problem while it’s still small.

Brushing too hard

Even though brushing your teeth regularly is a part of a healthy oral hygiene, if you brush too hard, you can actually damage your pearly whites. It can wear down tooth enamel, irritate your gums, make your teeth too sensitive to cold or heat, and in some cases, even cause cavities. That’s why experts recommend using a toothbrush with soft bristles and being gentle while brushing. Choose the brush that has been approved by the dental association of your country, and you’ll get the brush that’s firm enough to remove plaque, but soft enough not to damage your teeth and gums.

Using teeth as tools

Everyone has used their teeth as a tool at least once in their life. Sometimes we use teeth to shorten our fingernails or open a stubborn plastic package, but all those habits can lead to a chipped tooth or other damage. The best way to prevent that from happening is to stop biting on anything that’s not food, even though that’s sometimes hard to avoid. If you often find yourself using your teeth as a tool, think about getting a small multi-tool key chain. Those usually have small scissors, a nail file and a knife, and you will never have to use your teeth for anything but eating.

As you can see, most of these bad habits can be easily broken if you just put some thought into them. It’s very simple picking up a better toothbrush, clippers or scissors, and your teeth will be forever grateful.

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