Teeth are an important part of our bodies because they aid in breaking down food and digestion, but they can easily be chipped, broken, or damaged. Most people are aware of things that damage teeth, such as grinding them or eating sugary foods. However, there are many other things that can have a negative impact on teeth, many of which you may be shocked to find out.
You probably aren’t willing to give up that juicy steak just to save your teeth, but you should at least floss or chew some sugarless gum after indulging. Meat can easily get stuck in between teeth, which attracts bacteria. This could ultimately result in tooth decay.
Another food you should take caution with when eating is bread. Bread is often rich in sugar because of the carbohydrates and starches. Processed white bread is the worst, as it contains a lot of added sugar. Check the label before buying bread, and put back anything with added sugar.
3. Using your teeth as tools
Can’t find the scissors? People often use their teeth to rip off a price tag or bite their nails to even out a jagged edge, but these uses of teeth are actually harmful. It can wear down the jaw bone, causing a misalignment of the jaw.
4. Diet pills
A common side effect of many diet pills is dry mouth. Dry mouth is a lack of saliva in your mouth. Because saliva helps to wash away bacteria in the mouth, dry mouth can often lead to decay, or an overgrowth of bacteria called oral thrush.
Many sports can damage your teeth: football, basketball, and wrestling to name a few. This is because the physical contact involved in these sports can often result in knocked out teeth. Most people would not expect that swimming is bad for your teeth as well. The amount of chlorine in pools can wear away the enamel, making your teeth more prone to damage. Try swimming in fresh or salt water if possible, or brush your teeth after swimming and try to avoid your mouth’s contact with pool water altogether.
6. Using the wrong toothbrush
If you think that any old toothbrush will do the trick, you’d be wrong. There are two types of toothbrushes: those with soft bristles, and those with hard bristles. The ones with hard bristles can be too abrasive and cause damage to your enamel. The safest toothbrush to use is one with soft bristles.
It is possible to brush too much. While brushing your teeth is a great habit, doing so too often can wear the enamel on your teeth. Dentists recommend limiting brushing no more than two to three times a day, to ensure a clean – but not too clean – mouth.
Eliminating some of these habits and continuing to brush and floss regularly can help to improve your dental health, as well as decrease the risk of any damage. Ask your dentist about other habits that may be damaging your teeth, and how you can avoid them.