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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Habits That Can Wreck Your Teeth

Chewing on Ice

Chewing ice is a seemingly harmless, unconscious habit but can cause permanent damage to our teeth with small cracks. These cracks can grow larger over time and ultimately cause a tooth to fracture. Opt for chilled water or drinks without ice to resist the urge.

Bedtime Bottles

Despite being an effective tool to lull your baby to sleep, bottles of milk at bedtime increase the risk of early dental decay in your baby's mouth. Prolonged exposure of the sugar in milk
works with mouth bacteria to break down tooth enamel and results in rampant decay. There's even a name for it: Baby Bottle Tooth Decay. Find alternative methods to help your baby sleep before bedtime or use water in the bottle instead.

Tongue Piercings 

Tongue piercings are a trend that can come at a hefty price in terms of cost to your health. Highly discouraged by dentists, tongue piercings can cause teeth to chip or break requiring dental work. They can also rub against the gums and cause permanent gum recession, which can lead to sensitivity and even tooth loss. Mouth jewelry also encourages more bacteria buildup in the mouth creating an overall unhealthy situation.

Gummy Candy

Any candy is considered bad for your teeth, but the chewy, sticky kind is particularly harmful. The sticky nature of gummy candy, caramels, or jelly beans allows for them to get stuck in the crevices between or on the teeth and saliva is unable to wash it away. At a minimum, good tooth brushing and flossing after consuming these goodies can help, or just opt for sugar-free alternatives.


High sugar and acid content make for a bad combination for your teeth. Frequent soda drinking will essentially "bathe" your teeth in sugar and can lead to dental decay. Additionally, increased acid exposure works to erode tooth enamel and can lead to teeth sensitivity. If you must drink soda, lessen the frequency and opt for the healthier thirst-quencher, water. Also, minimize the erosion of enamel by rinsing with water after your teeth have been exposed to acidic beverages. Try sipping acidic drinks through a straw to avoid contact with the teeth. Finally, wait at least 30 minutes before brushing with a soft toothbrush after acid exposure to avoid further breakdown and wear of your enamel.


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