Practicing good dental habits like brushing your teeth at least twice each day, flossing a minimum of one time per day, and keeping up with regular routine dentist visits will help maintain better oral health. However, it is also important to understand that some mindless behaviors can damage teeth. Thoughtless everyday actions like biting nails, brushing your teeth too hard, or chewing ice are some of the worst habits to have regarding dental health.
1. Biting Nails Habit
Biting nails is a very common nervous habit among dental patients. It appears to calm people during times of stress or anxiety, but it can damage teeth over time. The biting nails habit puts continued stress on teeth, eventually causing cracks or chips. In addition, this bad dental habit can cause the jaw to protrude and lead to dysfunction.
A good way to avoid biting nails is to occupy your hands in other ways. Use a stress ball or rake sand in a Zen garden. Find alternate methods of managing stress.
2. Chewing Ice
Chewing ice can be refreshing, but it is one of the worst habits for your teeth. The harsh temperature and brittle texture of ice can damage teeth by causing tiny fractures that eventually develop into large cracks in the surface. Chewing ice should be avoided to protect your dental health.
3. Aggressive Teeth Brushing
Many people have the mistaken belief that harder teeth brushing is more effective. Nothing could be farther from the truth. More aggressive brushing doesn’t remove more stains and plaque; it is a bad dental habit that will only damage teeth and gums. Patients who brush their teeth too hard destroy precious teeth enamel and cause gum irritation. Instead, use a soft bristled brush and use gentle pressure to remove plaque and food debris.
By practicing good oral hygiene and breaking these worst dental habits, you will be on your way to a lifetime of optimal dental health.