When it comes to ensuring a long-lasting and fresh smile, there are certain habits that we may not be aware of that work against us.
Learn what you can do to avoid these issues, and to prolong your smile.
Don’t Bite Pencils/Pens/Ice
These objects are too hard on your teeth and can easily lead to wear, chips, and tooth breakage.
Don’t Open Packages With Your Teeth
Just like above, teeth aren’t meant to be used to open packages, whether they be plastic, aluminum, paper, etc. This can cause tooth chips and breakage. Make sure to have a pair of scissors handy!
Wear a Night Guard for Clenching/Grinding
If you notice you clench or grind your teeth at night, it is essential to wear a nightguard. Some of the symptoms of clenching and grinding are waking up with a headache, sore jaw, sore muscles in the face and neck and clicking of the jaw. Sometimes you may not be aware that you are clenching and grinding. However, your dentist or dental hygienist may see evidence on your teeth. Clenching and grinding cause tooth wear on the biting surfaces, and even chips and fractures.
Get Checked For Acid Reflux
If you suffer from acid reflux, it may also be affecting your teeth. A higher acid concentration in the mouth can lead to acid erosion on the teeth, which is a thinning of the outer layer of the teeth called the enamel. The good news is some medications help control the level of acidity.
Reduce Acidic/ Sugary Drinks
Acidic and sugary drinks lead to acid erosion and cavities. These types of drinks are sodas, juices, energy drinks, etc. It is vital to reduce the consumption of these types of drinks.
Use a Reusable Straw
If you do end up having an acidic/ sugary drink, try to make sure you use a reusable straw. By using a straw, the liquid is exposed less to your teeth, reducing the susceptibility to acid erosion and cavities.
Use a Salivary Substitute for Dry Mouth
If you suffer from a dry mouth, it is vital to use a salivary substitute. Saliva acts as a cleanser and removes harmful bacteria and acids from your teeth. If there is not enough saliva in your mouth, your risk for cavities is greater. Salivary substitutes come in the form of gum, lozenges and mouthwash
Try an Electric Toothbrush
If you use a manual toothbrush and have gum recession, you are probably brushing too aggressively. By switching to an electric toothbrush, all you have to focus on is guiding the brush. There are electric toothbrushes on the market that include a pressure indicator light that shows you when you are pressing too hard. Electric toothbrushes can reduce your susceptibility to gum recession and help you remove more plaque.