Posts Tagged ‘bruxism’

Dental Tips: 8 Bad Habits for Teeth

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010
Dental Habits

8 Bad Habits to Avoid...

When you are trying to maintain a beautiful, healthy smile, you have to keep in mind more than just brushing and flossing.  There are daily habits that some of us have that can have a negative impact on our teeth, gums and jaws.

The following list of damaging habits should be avoided at all costs:

1. Evening Snacking
Not only will this bad habit help to add unwanted pounds to our figures, but nighttime snacking will also cause problems to our teeth.  You may not know it, but saliva is essential for clearing food remnants away from the teeth.  With this in mind, our mouths produce less saliva at night than during the day.  As a result, people who snack at night are at risk to have more dental problems than those who do not.

2. A Bottle of Red, A Bottle of White… It all depends upon your appetite.
Which color wine do you think is worse for teeth?  If you answered red wine, you are incorrect.  Believe it or not – white wine is more damaging to teeth.  Most people would shy away from red wine because it stains the teeth almost immediately.  However, what most people don’t know is that white wine can actually cause more permanent problems due to the higher levels of acid that eat away at the teeth’s enamel.

3. Exercising
No, exercise is not bad for your teeth – unless you breathe through your mouth!  When you breathe through your mouth, your mouth loses the saliva that is necessary to prevent tooth decay.  So, continue the exercise, but be sure to breathe through your nose to keep your teeth healthy.

4. Drinking Bottled Water
Instead of drinking bottled water, choose tap water.  Bottled water is not fluoridated, while tap water is.  Remember that fluoride helps teeth remineralize.

5. Gum Chewing
Whether its sugarless of not, excessive gum chewing may irritate the temporomandibular joint, which can cause TMJ.  This can lead to headaches, earaches, and neck and facial pain.  Chewing gum occasionally won’t present problems and gums containing xylitol may actually help fight cavities, but chewing all the time can cause more damage than good. 

6. Biting Your Nails
Nail biting is not only bad for your nails, but it is also harmful to teeth. Nail biting reshapes the bottom of your upper teeth and can leave them with rigid edges. Nail biters are also at a higher risk of suffering from bruxism (unintentional teeth grinding).

7. Drinking From Glasses, Bottles and Cans
Instead of drinking from glasses, bottles or cans, choose drinking straws.  Drinking straws do not put drinks in direct contact with your teeth.  Over time, this can cause tooth decay. By drinking through a straw, you can minimize the contact between liquids and teeth because the straws are positioned towards the back of the mouth.

8. Brushing Your Teeth Horizontally
Excessive teeth brushing and especially horizontal brushing has been known to wear away the teeth’s enamel.  Instead, opt to brush with gentle circular strokes.  This should help keep your teeth healthy longer.

To get more dental tips and to find out how to keep your teeth looking great, be sure to check the Dental 5 Star blog regularly.  If you would like to have that great smile that you’ve always dreamed of, call Dr. Simkha at Prestige Dental today (212) 683-4330  or visit us online at to find out more information about Invisalign, dental veneers and many other dental procedures that can help give you that winning smile!