10 of the Worst Things You Can Do for Your Teeth

In Blog, Dental Care, Dental Health by Dr. Lattinelli

Manhattan Unhealthy Dental Habits | Upper West Side Dentist

We all know that we’re supposed to brush twice a day, floss, and visit the dentist regularly for checkups, but we like to remind our patients of all the things that are important to avoid as well! Here are ten of the worst things you can do for your teeth:

  1. One of the worst things you can do is use the wrong toothbrush; luckily this is an easy fix. Hard toothbrushes may seem like they’re doing a good job of cleaning your teeth, but can actually be extremely abrasive and damage gums enough that they begin to recede.
  2. Surprisingly, many people don’t know that brushing your teeth too often can be harmful. Best practice is to brush your teeth once in the morning and once at night. It’s important not to use too much force, and always wait at least thirty minutes after eating or drinking anything acidic to avoid wearing away at your enamel.
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  4. A nervous habit many of us have is nail-biting, and most of us don’t consider the havoc it can wreak on our teeth. It adds an abnormal amount of force and commonly causes small chips and fractures that will worsen over time.
  5. If you play any type of contact sport, mouth guards are a must. The physical damage you can experience from a hit to the face include knocking out teeth or breaking them, which can cause cut lips, tongues, and cheeks.
  6. If you commonly suffer from dry mouth, your teeth are likely suffering as well. The saliva in your mouth helps to strengthen your enamel with minerals as well as neutralize the acids that can damage your enamel, so without it, your teeth are weaker and more susceptible to damage.
  7. Never use your teeth as tools. Something as simple as ripping open a bag can cause major damage, so always grab a pair of scissors or the appropriate tool instead!
  8. Something a lot of people do without always realizing it is grinding their teeth or clenching their jaws. This happens commonly overnight during sleep. It can also break your teeth and even cause them to become loose in your jaw. The best way to protect yourself from doing so is to wear a night guard while you sleep.
  9. The things we eat also play a big role in the health of our teeth. Crunching on ice cubes is yet another way to add lots of unnecessary excess force on both your teeth and jaw, and can cause breaks and fractures.
  10. Be mindful of how much coffee and soda you’re drinking. Those, along with fruit juices, are extremely high in acid and cause irreversible damage to your enamel almost immediately.
  11. Sugar is also a big no-no if possible to avoid it. Monitor your intake, as it is one of the biggest causes of tooth decay and cavities.

Here at Dr. Lattinelli’s, we want all of our patients to feel confident showing off their bright smiles, and following this quick guide of what to avoid will keep your pearly whites happy and healthy for years to come!