You know about the habits that damage your overall health, like midnight snacking or spending the day at the beach without sunscreen. But what about the ones that affect your oral health? Nail biting and pen chewing are just two that can significantly damage your teeth over time — and that’s why your dentist in Harker Heights wants you to do your best to break these habits. We share the top 5 bad smile habits below!
#1: Nervous Habits
Many of us have a tic that shows up when we are nervous or stressed, like jiggling a knee or twirling the hair. But for people with more destructive habits — like nail biting, pen chewing, or clenching the jaw — their oral health can really suffer under pressure. These may seem like harmless actions, but over time, they can add up to a lot of stress on your teeth. People who bite their nails are more likely to chip a tooth, and jaw clenching related to stress can lead to weak or worn tooth enamel. To break these habits, try squeezing a stress ball or popping a rubber band around your wrist instead.
#2: Nighttime Teeth Grinding
If you suffer from the condition known as bruxism, or nighttime teeth grinding and jaw clenching, you are running the risk of weak, worn teeth, receding gums, and other negative side effects. Investing in a customized nightguard can help by cushioning the tooth enamel and protecting it from teeth grinding and jaw clenching.
#3: Ditching the Sportsguard
Sports injuries are one of the most common causes of dental emergencies like knocked out teeth, broken teeth, and others. A customized sports guard can provide significant protection — but only if you actually wear it. You should use the sports guard during every practice and game to ensure full protection from sports injuries.
#4: Eating Ice
Chomping on ice after you finish your afternoon tea or soda can lead to broken teeth, chipped teeth, and even cracked fillings or other dental work. It can also lead to sensitivity that makes you say “ouch.” Break this bad habit for the sake of your healthy, complete smile.
#5: Not Visiting the Dentist Regularly
Patients of all ages should visit the dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning. These regular appointments are important because they allow us to catch the early warning signs of issues like tooth decay and gum disease before they become significant problems. Prevention is the name of the game in dentistry — so when was YOUR last visit to the dentist in Harker Heights? If it’s been awhile, it’s time to come in for the benefit of your oral health.
Meet the Practice
Dr. Melinda Duncan and Dr. Patrick O’Malley offer superior dental services from the comfort of the modern Marketing Heights Family Dental practice. To learn more about what they have to offer friends and families like yours, you are welcome to contact the office at 254-699-3565.