5 Bad Dental Habits that Can Lead to Tooth Loss

Brushing, flossing, and regular dental checkups are vital to good oral health. Moreover, it’s important to care for your teeth properly. Here are a five bad habits that dentists want you to avoid.

Over-Brushing Your Teeth

Amazing as this may seem, there is a right and a wrong way to brush your teeth. Brushing too hard, too long (more than two minutes), or using a toothbrush with hard bristles can wear away the protective layer of enamel and expose your tooth root. However, some dental professionals believe that using an electric toothbrush can cause problems as well.

A 2016 story out of New Zealand suggests that even overzealous dental patients using an electric toothbrush can cause damage including receding gums and tooth sensitivity. Talk to your dentist if you have questions or concerns.

Occasional Oral Hygiene Leads to Tooth Loss

Most people are aware of the need to brush, floss, and rinse daily. Even so, many still think they can get away with doing only half the job or doing it only half the time.

To make sure you get the full health benefits, experts recommend you brush and rinse at least twice a day and floss at least once. Flossing complements tooth brushing by removing the small particles that you can’t reach between your teeth. Rinsing after you brush helps remove the bacteria you’ve dislodged with brushing and flossing. While a good alcohol-free rinse provides added protection, even rinsing with water alone offers some benefit.

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Putting the Wrong Things in Your Mouth

Your mouth and teeth are for chewing, speaking, and supporting your jaw and face. Using them as a bottle opener, scissors, pliers, or a nutcracker is potentially harmful. Even so, people routinely use their teeth as tools.

Using your teeth improperly may lead to cracked, chipped, broken, and loose teeth. Additionally, you could damage your gums and other soft tissue in your mouth. It’s vital to remember to use your teeth correctly in order to retain a healthy mouth and a beautiful smile.

Oral Piercings May Cause Problems

According to the American Dental Association, oral piercings may lead to problems including gum and tongue pain, swelling, and infection as well as cracked, broken, and missing teeth. Tongue and lip piercings also may cause sensitivity to metals, increase saliva flow resulting in drooling, and result in nerve damage.

While piercings may be trendy, before you make the plunge talk with your dentist to ensure you make the best choice.

Tooth Grinding Can Lead to Tooth Damage

It really doesn’t matter what causes bruxism (tooth grinding), it’s all about taking steps to correct the problem before you cause damage to your teeth. Over time, tooth grinding can wear down your teeth and result in headaches, jaw aches, and tooth sensitivity.

The damage occurs due to repeatedly clenching your jaw and grinding your teeth. The pressure can result in micro-fractures in your teeth. This weakens the enamel and causes damage to your dental work.

To learn how to care for your teeth and gums properly speak with your dentist. Make sure you’re doing the best you can for your smile.

Cleaning your teeth is very important but as the article says, overbrushing can be damaging too. Flossing has been recommended in the past to clean in between the teeth but the latest research shows that flossing is ineffective in reducing gum disease. This was published in a workshop report in 2015 by the European Federation of Periodontology. Their recommendation is to use interdental brushing instead of flossing. Dr. Mohindra has been recommending this since the 1980’s. By using the Wisdom interproximal brush, he found he could stop bleeding of the gums in virtually all patients.
When starting to use interdental brushing, it is best to do this initially under the supervision of a dentist or hygyienist. He believes the role of mouthwashes in the treatment of gum disease is overemphasised and is not necessary in most cases when using interdental brushing.One of the points to remember about tooth grinding is that the wear on the teeth can be exacerbated if the patient uses acidic mouthwashes, or drinks fizzy drinks All carbonated drinks, even water can be acidic. Fruits and fruit juices can also be detrimental to teeth.
If you clench or grind your teeth at night time, dentists usually recommended a mouth guard for nighttime use.When a patient uses an appliance at night time, the damage is done to the appliance and not the teeth. Dr. Mohindra believes however, that clenching and grinding are habits that can be broken. His work with Oralift suggests that the wear of nighttime appliances may not be essential. He also believes that clenching contributes to premature ageing, and this is a field which needs to be researched.– Dr. N. Mohindra

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