Dental Habits that Hurt Teeth

When thinking about our teeth, our main goal is to achieve optimal oral health and avoid decay and bacteria that leads to dental issues. We have learned that routine dental visits, brushing twice a day, and using dental floss and mouthwash can aid in that goal. Unfortunately, there are bad habits associated with oral health that we may not be aware are causing more harm than good. 

Brushing Too Hard 

You may be surprised to learn that there is a wrong way to brush your teeth that can actually be causing more harm than good. Brushing too hard can damage teeth and irritate gums. If you are seeing blood when brushing and rinsing your mouth, there is need for concern over your brushing habits. Be sure not to use a stiff bristled brush and to use gentle, circular motions.

Nail Biting

This is a popular, compulsive habit that you may be totally unaware of doing. Nail biting can become a problem over time causing the teeth to crack, become worn, and introduce bacteria into the body. It can also put added pressure on the jaw, causing discomfort.

Clenching or Grinding Teeth 

When anxiety creeps in, you may find yourself clenching your teeth together. Stress and anxiety are a leading culprit of clenching and grinding. Repeated clenching and grinding episodes can cause issues such as headaches and jaw discomfort, ultimately leading to issues related to TMD.

Using Teeth as a Tool 

 It might seem like teeth are a most convenient tool to open a package, cut a tag, or pop open a bottle, they are strong and always around; however, using teeth in that way can cause them to chip and crack. Take the extra few seconds to get a pair of scissors or an opener. Your teeth will thank you.

If you are in the Washington, DC area and are concerned that any of these bad habits have already caused damage to your teeth, please call our office to schedule an appointment. We can work together to come up with a dental plan that is right for you and your needs. We look forward to seeing you soon!

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