We all know the basics when it comes to the dental hygiene drill: brush twice a day, floss and see your Krengel Dental dentist twice a year. While those behaviors go a long way, there are some habits you may not realize or harping on your dental health!
Here are three habits that can harm your teeth and some ideas for how to break them:
- Nail biting
Unfortunately, biting our nails is a nervous habit that is hard to beat. Not only does this habit chip away at your nails. It can actually chip your teeth and do damage to your jaw over time. Nail biting over the years is correlated with jaw dysfunction due to the pressure it places on your jaw when maintaining that position. What may help to chip away at the habit instead of your teeth? Finding a healthier way to manage stress is the long term strategy! Using a fidget toy or drawing/doodling to keep our hands and fingers busy are helpful ways to keep our hands busy in stressful situations.
- Chewing Ice
This habit is anything but cool for your teeth! Tooth enamel and ice do not get along, as chewing on ice starts to wear down on your enamel, making your teeth more vulnerable to cavities and sensitivity. Chewing on ice can also cause damage to fillings or crowns, as the temperature change can cause fillings to expand and metal materials to shift their shape. What can help to break the habit? Drink more water and keep away from filling your cup with ice so that you not tempted!
- Making your teeth a tool
Do you use your teeth if you need to open, tear, tighten or loosen something?! This makes your Krengel Dental team cringe! While our teeth were made for eating, they unfortunately were not made to act like scissors or a screwdriver. If your hands are full, using your teeth to hold things or as a tool heightens the risk of cracking your teeth, injuring your jaw, or even swallowing something you definitely didn’t mean to have for lunch! What helps to stray away from using your teeth as tools? Practice makes perfect for this one! Start asking for an extra hand from a support or catching yourself when you notice your go-to tool is your teeth! Believe us, your mouth and smile will thank you later, and your Krengel Dental dentist will remind you of it!
We know habits are hard to break, but the truth is, putting in the work to break these habits now will have a positive long-term influence on your dental hygiene, smile and your wallet! Struggle with breaking these habits and need some assistance? Your Krengel Dental team is a quick call away and ready to help: 952-888-1311