Oral hygiene is very important for our overall health. Even though most of the people regularly brush, floss and clean their teeth, we all have some bad habits that we don’t notice until the damage is done. These habits can be everything from brushing too much to clenching your jaw too hard. On first glance, they might not seem that bad for your teeth, but over long periods of time the damage adds up and can lead to some serious conditions.
To help you pinpoint these habits, we’ve made a list of the most common ones and how to quit them. These habits can be hard to get rid of, but it’s very important that you do if you care for the future of your teeth.
Not flossing after you brush
One of the most important parts of dental hygiene is flossing, yet most people skip this step. Brushing does a decent job of cleaning your teeth, but it can’t reach every nook and cranny in your mouth. Sometimes small pieces of food can stay lodged between your teeth for days if you don’t floss. This can lead to a number of problems like gum disease, plaque, bad breath, tartar, etc.
The only solution is to regularly floss. Start by flossing once a day until you build up a habit. Ideally, you want to floss after every meal, but we know that this is not possible especially if you often eat outside. That’s why you should try to make yourself floss at least two times a day, in the morning and right before bed.
This is a no-brainer. Everybody knows that smoking is bad for your overall health, but it’s really bad for your teeth. Smoking will produce plaque faster, make your teeth lose that pearly white shine and cause a number of different problems, so it’s very important to fight this highly addictive habit. If you don’t want to end up losing your teeth, constantly have a bad breath or even something worse, like contracting lung or oral cancer, then seek help immediately.
We know how hard it can be to quit tobacco, but with professional help and with the help of your family, we guarantee you’ll be able to do it. The good news is that the human body is constantly repairing itself, so it’s never too late to quit cigarettes. The sooner you stop smoking the faster your recovery will be.
Grinding teeth on each other
Grinding teeth refers to the process of sliding teeth on each other or biting really hard. This might not seem that harmful, but there are a lot of studies that prove opposite. Teeth grinding can lead to teeth splitting all the way to the root, and even to damaging the joint that keeps your jaw connected to the skull. Why people grind their teeth is unknown, but many experts link it to stress.
That is why one of the solutions for this problem is psychotherapy or massages to help your body relax. Other ways you can fight this problem is to use a nighttime mouth guard. It’s similar to boxing guard, but a bit smaller so it doesn’t bother you in your sleep. Additionally, if your teeth grinding is linked to uneven bite, then putting adult braces is the way to go. Visit your dentist and determine if this is a possible solution. If it is, within a few months, everything will sort out.
Biting your nails
Lastly, nail biting is an awful habit a lot more people than you think have. It’s not only ugly to watch someone bite their nails, but it’s extremely unhygienic and bad for your teeth. By doing so you can chip your teeth, hurt your jaw, etc. Because this habit is usually linked to stress, you should consider visiting a psychotherapist. If this is a bit extreme measure, you can use bitter-tasting nail polishes or when a stressful situation comes keep your hands busy to avoid biting nails.
As you can see these habits are pretty common, and the majority of people don’t take them seriously. Because they don’t produce problems right away a lot of people disregard them until it is too late. Don’t be one of those people and if you notice some of these habits on yourself, try to get rid of them. You will have a much healthier and prettier smile.