April 9, 2019
You find yourself in the kitchen looking for a wine opener, and your search is proving to be unsuccessful. Suddenly, you decide there’s enough of the cork sticking up that you can pull it with your teeth. Bad idea! It’s instances like this that can cause serious damage to your pearly whites. Our teeth were never meant to be used as tools. Do they shred? Yes. Do they grind? Yes. But all of this happens when consuming our food, not opening a bag or pulling a cork. In honor of Dental Hygienist Appreciation Week, make yours smile by choosing to avoid these 6 bad dental habits.
Teeth Don’t Go in a Toolbox
Consider this: when you look in a toolbox, you probably see a hammer, nails, wrench, screwdriver, and a measuring tape, but do you see teeth? No, because they’re never meant to be used to fix, open, pull, or tear anything other than food. By using your choppers to tear open a bag, uncap that bottle of nail polish, or chew through that plastic that holds a price tag in place, you can cause the edges to weaken or even fracture. So, let the real tools (scissors, pliers) do the work, not your teeth.
Let’s Not Break the Ice
Admit it: you love ice. But did you know, those small, cold cubes can break your teeth and leave you in a pain? Not only because of the fracture, but also because of the sensitivity you’ll experience if they’re severely damaged.
The Daily Grind
Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is a real condition that can cause serious wear and tear on your smile. Whether it’s stress, anxiety, an abnormal bite, or missing teeth that is causing you to grind your teeth, you may need to talk to your dentist about wearing a mouthguard at night. You can have one custom made to fit your mouth and prevent further damage.
Forgetting to Brush with Care
Some people think an effective clean means brushing your teeth as hard as you can to scrub away all the germs and bacteria. Guess again. This type of cleaning can harm your teeth and gums. The same goes for hard-bristled toothbrushes. As you age, your gums will recede, causing your tooth roots to expose themselves and cause sensitivity. When brushing with a hard-bristled toothbrush, you risk wearing away at the cementum that covers the root that can lead to sensitive teeth.
Taking Shortcuts with Your Dental Routine
You brush and floss your teeth every morning and before you go to bed, but instead of adhering to the 2-minute rule, you rush through your brushing in 30 seconds and only bother to floss your front teeth. This is ineffective and could cause problems further down the road. Not only should you brush for a full two minutes, but you should replace the head of your toothbrush (if electric) or your entire toothbrush every three to four months.
In addition, floss your entire mouth at least once a day, and make sure you’re doing it correctly. Your dentist can show you the proper way to floss, so you don’t damage your gums. It’s also important to use an antiseptic rinse to get rid of bacteria that can lead to gum disease and bad breath.
Avoiding the Dentist
Regular six-month checkups are crucial to ensure your teeth and gums are in good condition. Your dentist will want to check for any issues, since catching any oral-related problem in its early stages will increase the likelihood for a successful treatment and healthy smile. However, if problems are left to fester and progress, you could be looking at extensive restoration treatment options.
By avoiding these 6 bad dental habits, you won’t be the only one showing off your smile. Your dentist and dental hygienist will be smiling, too!
About the Practice
Are you looking for a high-quality, relationship-driven dental office that you can enjoy for years to come? Look no further than Bellevue Family & Cosmetic Dentistry. Not only do we provide a wide array of dentistry services, but we offer additional office hours, extended services, and valuable benefits to our patients, such as personalized care, patient education, and flexible payment options. You may also be surprised to know that we have a multilingual team who can speak English, Hindi, Punjabi, and Japanese! To learn more about our services and how we can help, contact us at (425) 641-1902.
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