1. Chewing on hard foods
We’re looking at you Beef jerky and hard or stale bread.
2. Chewing on hard items
This includes fingernails, pencils, pen caps, and ice.
3. Grinding your teeth
If you grind your teeth, discuss it with your dentist. An appliance can protect your smile.
4. Eating too much sticky food
Gummy candy, dried fruit, and even protein bars can chip teeth.
5. Drinking anything besides water frequently
If your teeth are bathed in soda (sugared or diet), juice, coffee, or sports drinks constantly, you are asking for dental problems.
6. Playing sports without a mouthguard
Sports pose a major risk of tooth damage. Most kids are required to wear a protective mouthguard on the playing field. But fewer adults wear mouthguards for recreational activities like mountain biking and skiing. Stock mouthguards are one-size-fits-all but rarely fit well. Custom-fitted mouthguards from your dentist are more comfortable than the cheap boil-and-bite type.
7. Using a hard-bristled toothbrush
A hard-bristled tooth brush can damage teeth and cause gums to pull away. Remove food bits and plaque with a soft (or extra-soft) toothbrush.
8. Ignoring dry mouth
Saliva is important. Saliva rinses food fragments off of teeth and helps neutralize acids. It also helps clean the teeth of leftover food bits, helping to prevent plaque buildup. Constant dry mouth, or xerostomia, can lead to tooth decay. Talk to your dentist if you have dry mouth regularly.
9. Using teeth as tools
Locate a pair of scissors to open a package or pry the lid of a medicine bottle. Use a nutcracker if you are eating unshelled nuts. A quality dental crown can cost over eight hundred dollars.
10. Ignoring bad breath
Bad breath is often related to bacteria build-up in the mouth. It might be a symptom of accelerating decay. Discuss it with your dentist. (Don’t be embarrassed. We treat bad breath all the time.)
11. Ignoring jaw pain
If you experience frequent jaw pain or notice a clicking sound, be sure to schedule an appointment with your dentist promptly! These symptoms can be signs of a serious condition called temporomandibular disorder or TMD.
Is it too late? Have you already broken or chipped a tooth? We can repair it at Kevin Bass DMD Cosmetic and Family Dentistry. There are a number of restorative and cosmetic dental treatments for chipped or cracked teeth.