Following a strict oral care regime is crucial to having healthy teeth and gums. Most people brush their teeth, floss daily, and use mouthwash to get a deeper clean, and that’s great! However, some people don’t properly protect their teeth outside of their dental care routine.
Here are common things that people do that they may or may not know hurt their teeth.
Using your teeth as tools
Sure opening a twist-off bottle cap with your teeth looks like a fun party trick, but doing so can really damage your teeth! Even opening a cellophane-wrapped package with your teeth can cause harm to your mouth if you do it a lot. Using your teeth as tools can end up causing unwanted cracks, chips, and fractures that will end up costing you a lot of money to get fixed. In extreme cases, broken teeth will have to be permanently replaced with an implant.
Getting a lip, cheek or tongue piercing
We aren’t here to tell you what to do with your life; if you want to get a piercing, the more power to you! With that said, you should at least be aware of the dental problems you could face when you get a piercing in or near your mouth. Getting a ring or stud piercing on your tongue, lip, or cheek can result in bleeding, swelling, and infections. It can also lead to complications with teeth near the piercing like fractures and gum recession. These problems can end up leading to tooth decay and loss. If you do have any oral piercings, you have to be careful not to bite the piece of jewellery to avoid further damage to your teeth.
Playing sports without a mouthguard
If you play any contact sports, even at a recreational level, it’s very important to always wear a mouthguard on the field of play. If you play in a non-contact hockey league, for example, you should still wear a mouthguard in case an errant puck or stick finds its way to your mouth. There are a few options when it comes to sports mouthguards to invest in. The first is the over the counter type where you boil it in water then bite into it to make a moulding. The second type is a bit more expensive but it will give you better results. This type of mouthguard is moulded exactly to your teeth by your dentist to fit as comfortably as it can.
Over bleaching your teeth
Bleaching your teeth is a great and safe way to brighten up your smile, however, if you do it too often, you are at risk of causing nerve damage and tooth pitting. If you notice any sensations or irritations in your gums after bleaching your teeth, see your dentist as soon as you can.
Chewing ice cubes
It may not seem obvious, but chewing ice can slowly chip away at your tooth enamel and can even cause a tooth to break. If you have any fillings, you are at a higher risk of damaging that tooth due to the force you need to bite down on a cube of ice.