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Bad Dental Habits to Leave Behind

Posted by DENNIS HAHN on Dec 10 2022, 11:14 PM

Taking care of our oral health is as important as taking care of our overall health. However, sometimes, due to certain bad habits, our oral health becomes at risk. Listed below are some of those bad habits that can affect our oral health.

  • Nail Biting

Many people bite their nails unconsciously. Nail biting is a bad habit because it creates many oral health problems. It can lead to swollen or bleeding gums, tooth damage, and a receding gum line. Biting nails can also chip our teeth or cause other damage. The habit of biting the nails also encourages the growth of bacteria in your mouth, which can result in other oral problems like caries and cavities. If you don’t stop on your own, your dentist can help by recommending stress-relieving techniques like meditation and yoga. Wearing gloves can also help curb this bad habit.

  • Smoking

Cigarette smoking is one of the most common and well-known unhealthy habits that can damage our oral health. In fact, smoking is one of the leading causes of oral cancer. So, you should never smoke. In addition to causing oral cancer, smoking is also linked to stained teeth and bad breath. It can also lead to gum disease like gingivitis.

Moreover, smoking causes the salivary glands to produce less saliva. As a result, food particles can remain in the mouth for longer periods of time. Plaque can also build up faster than normal. This can lead to cavities, tooth decay, and other oral health problems.

  • Aggressive Brushing

Many of us brush our teeth aggressively with a hard-bristled toothbrush. But did you know that this habit can cause damage to your oral health? 

Enamel is the outer layer of your teeth that acts as a protective shield against decay and bacteria. But when the enamel is worn away, bacteria and plaque can get access to your sensitive inner tooth layer and cause cavities. If your enamel wears down, it exposes more of the dentin inside your tooth, which can lead to sensitivity and even pain. To keep your enamel healthy, you need to avoid brushing too hard. Using a gentle back-and-forth motion and a soft-bristled toothbrush is best. If you have a history of gum recession or receding gums, make sure to be extra careful with how you brush your teeth.

  • Teeth Grinding

Mouth pain and headaches are often caused by teeth grinding or bruxism. It’s estimated that about 30% of the adult population grinds their teeth at night. Bruxism is often due to stress; however, it can also be related to an abnormal bite or missing or crooked teeth. If you suspect you’re grinding your teeth in your sleep, schedule a visit to our dentist. We can help you alleviate the pain associated with teeth grinding with a nightguard appliance. A nightguard is a thin piece of plastic that is worn over the teeth and helps to lessen the damage caused by teeth clenching. 

  • Not Visiting The Dentist Regularly

Studies report that most people avoid seeing a dentist because they feel anxiety or fear when they think about the appointment. When you don’t visit your dentist on a regular basis, it can lead to a number of dangers to your oral health. Skipping preventive dental visits can also lead to more serious oral health concerns such as gum disease, tooth decay, tooth loss, oral cancer, and more. If you are too afraid to visit the dentist, ask a family member who feels comfortable at the dentist’s office to accompany you during your appointments. They can help you relax during your appointment and ask questions that you may have about the procedure. You can also request a sedative to help you sleep through the procedure. If you suffer from dental phobias or have any other questions about maintaining good oral hygiene habits, contact our dentist today to schedule your next appointment.

To learn more, contact our dentist in Federal Way, WA, at Marine Hills Dentistry by calling (253) 839-2800 or visiting us at 1500 S Dash Point Rd, Federal Way, WA, 98003.

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