March 14, 2019
Your habits can make or break you, especially when it comes to your oral health. Most people are already aware of bad habits like smoking or drinking too much soda, but there are many surprising habits that can lead to emergencies like cracked teeth, broken fillings, or toothaches. And it’s a safe bet that no one wants to make an unexpected trip to the dentist if they can avoid it! In this blog, you’ll learn about 6 common habits to give up that will help you avoid unnecessary visits to an emergency dentist in Orlando.
1. Chewing on Pens or Pencils
Chewing on pens or pencils is a common, often unconscious habit that can seem harmless, but it can lead to small cracks in the enamel or even chips and breaks.
It’s helpful to put your pens and pencils down (and out of your reach) when you’re done writing. You can also ask your co-workers, friends, and family to tell you when they notice you doing it, or try chewing gum as a substitute.
2. Not Brushing and Flossing at Night
Although it’s best to brush twice a day and floss once, many people (incorrectly) believe that their oral hygiene routine is most important in the morning. However, bedtime brushing actually matters more because your teeth are at the highest risk for cavities while you sleep.
If you find that brushing and flossing before bed is unrealistic because you’re too tired, try doing it right after dinner when you have more energy.
3. Using Cough Drops Too Often
Most cough drops contain sugar, which makes them just as harmful as hard candy. If you regularly reaching for cough drops for any reason, you’re at high risk for getting a lot of cavities.
If you want to continue using cough drops, just opt for one of the sugar-free varieties that are widely available to reduce this risk.
4. Playing Sports Without a Mouthguard
The old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” has never been truer than when it comes to protecting your teeth and gums with a mouthguard.
These protective guards make it so much easier to prevent breaking a tooth or knocking one out altogether than to get treatment afterward.
5. Clenching and Grinding Without Wearing a Nightguard
Many people clench and grind at night, which puts a huge amount of force on your teeth. Over time, this can lead to sensitivity and also cause the teeth to crack or fracture.
Fortunately, a dentist in Orlando can make a custom-made nightguard to prevent these issues, so ask at your next checkup if you have signs of this common nighttime habit.
6. Brushing Too Hard
It may seem like brushing hard will do a better job of cleaning your teeth and gums, but it actually causes more harm than good.
By using light pressure and brushing for the full recommended time of 2 minutes, you’ll still do a thorough job – without causing any damage.
These 6 habits impact you and your family’s dental health in surprising ways. But, by taking steps to avoid them, you can prevent problems from occurring and minimize the amount of dental work you need!
About the Author
Dr. John E. Russo is an award-winning general and emergency dentist in Orlando with 25 years of experience and also a native of the area. In addition to providing high-quality emergency dental care, he always takes the time to encourage good habits that help his patients protect their smiles in between visits. If you have any other questions, he can be reached via his website.
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