The longer you can keep your natural teeth intact and healthy the better. It might go without saying, but our mouths are much healthier if we have all our natural teeth. Chipping, cracking, or breaking teeth can result in a number of dental problems and even the loss of your teeth. Losing a tooth might not seem like that big of a deal, but it can be more serious than you think. The jawbone can actually deteriorate over time as a result of lost teeth. Preserving your pearly whites at their best is very important, and in the spirit of this fact we’ve compiled a list of the top five ways we damage our teeth.
- Chewing on Pencils or Crunching Ice.
It might seem harmless, but chewing on pencils or pens is a great way to crack a tooth and send you to your Salt Lake City dentist. Crunching on ice is no better. Even though it is sugar free and natural, ice can easily cause you to break a tooth and increase your sensitivity to hot and cold foods. Snacking on ice can also cause toothaches by damaging the soft tissue around your teeth. If you need something to chew on, choose a piece of sugarless gum and spare your teeth.
- Playing Sports Without a Mouth Guard.
This is another obvious choice, but it happens more often than you’d think. Whether it’s playing Utah high school football or hockey, any kind of sport can present a risk to your teeth. It’s unfortunate, but even though our teeth our very strong, they are still susceptible to trauma is not properly protected (Just look at a hockey player’s smile). If you regularly play sports, consider wearing a mouth guard to save yourself from some pain, keep your teeth safe and avoid the need for things like porcelain veneers and dental implants from your dentist.
- Grinding Your Teeth.
This one is no secret, but grinding your teeth, or bruxism, is a sure fire way to damage your teeth. Most people grind their teeth because of stress or in their sleep, which makes it hard to control. Dealing with your stress through appropriate outlets or wearing a mouth guard while you sleep is a great way to prevent to the damage that grinding your teeth can inflict on your teeth. If you’re teeth are already damaged, avoid hard foods to reduce the likelihood of pain while eating.
- Opening Things With Your Teeth.
This bad habit makes dentists everywhere cringe. It might be convenient, especially when your hands are full with other things, but it’s a really great way to chip or crack your teeth. Opening bottles or plastic packaging with your teeth may seem harmless, but you’re needlessly putting your teeth at risk. Keep a pair of scissors handy for those tough to open packages, and remember, your teeth should only be used for eating.
- Sugary Drinks and Foods.
What we eat and drink has a powerful impact on our teeth. We all love a treat from time to time, but what we might not realize is that bombarding our teeth with sugar and acidic drinks is a proven method for destroying our teeth. Sugary foods and drinks contribute to plaque and the acid in soda, wine, juice, and coffee can weaken the enamel of our teeth. Try to limit snacking and drink more water in place of other harmful beverages.
Fortunately, if you’ve wrecked your teeth, cosmetic dentistry has come a long way, and Dr. Gleave is well trained in giving people their smiles back, through porcelain veneers, implants, and more.
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