Everyone knows that you need to brush, floss, and go to the dentist regularly to maintain a healthy smile. Avoiding staining foods and drinks and limiting your sugar intake also contribute to a healthy and attractive smile.
What you may not know, however, is that how you use your teeth greatly impacts the health and appearance of your smile.
Do you crunch on ice? Cool it!
Anytime you crunch on a hard, solid object (whether it is food or something else), you run the risk of cracking, chipping, or otherwise damaging a tooth or several teeth, your tooth enamel, or existing dental work. Ice cubes, due partially to their cold temperature, increase this risk.
Also, because of its temperature, ice can potentially shock a nerve in your tooth, causing the need for root canal therapy.
Your Teeth Are Not Tools
Do you use your teeth to rip tags off of clothing, open wrappers, open bottles, and hold things when your hands are full? If so, you’re putting yourself at risk for severe dental damage and infection. Our teeth are meant to bite, chew, help us speak properly, and help us smile- that’s it. They’re not pliers, scissors, or spare hands.
They’re also not nail clippers. Biting your nails is one on the worst things you can do for your teeth. The pressure from pulling your fingers away from your teeth can cause misalignment, cracking, chipping, and damage to existing dental work. Also, your sharp nails (which are covered in bacteria, by the way) can scratch and cut your gums, causing an open sore in your mouth for bacteria to infect.
Keep Pencils Behind Your Ear, Not Between Your Teeth
The basic rule here is to keep things out of your mouth that don’t belong there. This includes pencils, pens, eyeglasses, and anything else you may have a habit of chewing on. These items, unlike most foods, are hard and apply a large amount of pressure to your teeth when you bite down on them. Additionally, items that you use daily, especially in school and at the office, are covered in bacteria. Exposing your mouth to bacteria increases your chance of oral infection and viruses.
For more tips on how to keep your smile healthy and looking great, call Wager Evans Dental, serving the communities of Reno, Sparks, Sun Valley, and Hidden Valley at (775) 800-4845 to reserve an appointment with Dr. William Wager and Dr. Brian Evans.