12 Habits That Are Slowly Ruining Your Teeth

Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you, but everyday habits can stealthily undermine the health of your teeth. The road to dental decay isn’t only paved with candy bars and soda; many common lifestyle patterns contribute to the deterioration of our oral health, often without us even realizing it. 

Sipping on Sugary Drinks Throughout the Day

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According to the American Dental Association, frequent sugar consumption can create an environment where bacteria thrive and produce tooth decay-causing acids. Constantly sipping sugary beverages like soda, energy drinks, and fruit juices can lead to enamel erosion and cavities over time.

Chewing on Ice

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While it may seem harmless, chewing on ice can cause microscopic cracks in your teeth and weaken them over time. This habit can also irritate the soft tissues in your mouth and lead to tooth sensitivity.

Using Your Teeth as Tools

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Your teeth are meant for biting, chewing, and grinding food, not opening bottles or tearing open packages. Using your teeth as tools can cause chips, fractures, or even breakage of your teeth.

Clenching or Grinding Your Teeth

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Clenching or grinding your teeth – also known as bruxism – is a common habit that often occurs during sleep. In severe cases, this can put excessive force on your teeth, leading to worn-down enamel, jaw pain, and tooth loss.

Smoking or Using Tobacco Products

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The use of cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco can have serious adverse effects on your oral health. Tobacco use increases the risk of gum disease, oral cancer, tooth discoloration, and bad breath.

Snacking Frequently

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When you snack throughout the day without giving your teeth a break, you constantly expose them to sugars and acids that can cause tooth decay. Avoid snacking and opt for teeth-friendly snacks like fruits and vegetables instead.

Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard

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Brushing your teeth too hard can damage the protective layer of enamel on your teeth. This can lead to sensitivity, receding gums, and even tooth loss.

Not Brushing or Flossing Regularly

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Skipping your regular brushing and flossing routine can harm your oral health. Plaque buildup can cause gum disease and tooth decay if not removed regularly.

Grinding Your Teeth in Response to Stress

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Similar to clenching or grinding your teeth during sleep, doing so when you’re stressed or anxious can also cause damage to your teeth over time. Finding healthy ways to cope with stress, such as exercise or meditation, can help break this habit.

Skipping Regular Dental Check-Ups

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Even if you have good oral hygiene habits, seeing your dentist regularly for cleanings and check-ups is essential. They can catch any potential issues early on and guide you on maintaining a healthy smile. 

Using a Hard-Bristled Toothbrush

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A common misconception is that more rigid bristles mean better cleaning. Using a hard-bristled toothbrush can cause damage to your gums and enamel. Opt for a soft or extra-soft bristle brush instead.

Not Drinking Enough Water

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Water helps wash away food particles and bacteria in your mouth, promoting saliva production and neutralizing acids. Not drinking enough water can lead to dry mouth, which increases the risk of tooth decay and bad breath.

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This article was produced on Health Makes You.

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