Teeth are supposed to last the entirety of your lifetime, but only if you take good care of them and keep them healthy. Keeping the teeth healthy involves practicing good dental care such as daily brushing, regular flossing and a visit to the dentist at least twice a year for cleaning and check-ups. This will make your teeth strong and keep them in great shape. However, there are habits that are likely part of your daily routine that can harm your teeth even after doing all the necessary dental care procedures. These habits put your teeth at a bigger risk of damage or disease. Here are some things to avoid doing to keep your teeth healthy and happy.

Biting On Hard Items

Do you chew on your nails whenever you are nervous? Do you get tempted to crunch on ice cubes, especially on a hot summer day? You are doing your teeth a great deal of harm. Biting your nails or hard objects such as pens or even hard candy could make cracks in your teeth and cause them to wear away at the enamel. It is also unhygienic as it facilitates the transfer of bacteria between the objects and the mouth. For ice-chewing, the extreme temperatures, dryness, and solidity of ice have adverse effects on your teeth. This habit wears down the enamel and exposes the dentin, thus causing sensitivity. It also leads to minute fractures on your teeth which can cause future problems when they expand.

Brushing Too Hard

According to a family dentist in Riverton, brushing too hard is bad for your teeth, and your gums. Common sense tells you the harder you brush, the more the germs and food residue will get scrubbed away. But brushing too hard has its repercussions. It wears down the enamel, causing teeth to become sensitive to heat or cold, and also damages the gums, increasing the risk of gum diseases. Remember, always use a soft-bristled toothbrush, and brush your teeth gently and on all sides.

Grinding Your Teeth

Not only can grinding or clenching your teeth hurt your jaw, it also does damage to your teeth. Some people have a condition known as bruxism, whereby you unconsciously grind or clench your teeth while sleeping or as a response to stressful situations. When you clench your teeth and grind, it wears them down and makes them weaker and vulnerable to decay. It also affects dental fillings, crown, and other dental restorations. There are a number of remedies for unconscious grinding/clenching, such as using a mouth guard or muscle relaxant before sleeping.

Using Your Teeth As a Tool

Many people use their teeth improperly without even thinking about it. Opening packages, ripping tags off clothing, unscrewing bottle tops or even biting off a thread are an improper use of the teeth and can cause cracks and damage the roots and enamel of the teeth. There are tools meant for these functions such as scissors, and they are more effective than using your teeth.

Habits are hard to break and can take time. But with the right instructions and information, it won’t be a losing battle. Take into consideration how you can break these habits that are harmful to your teeth. You can reward yourself if you successfully overcome a particular habit. But that alone isn’t enough. Visit your dentist at least twice a year for checkups, cleaning and advice on how to kick out harmful habits.

Author's Bio: 

Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure.