Toothbusters! Who You Gonna Call?
What am I talking about? I’m talking about the so-called innocent nervous habits we often turn to when the pressure is on. One of the most common is nail biting. If you don’t do it yourself, I’m sure you know someone who does. Even the famous life coach Tony Robbins admits that in his youth, he was a chronic nail biter and actually lost a profitable business deal because of the condition of his nails.
Toothbuster number 1 Nail Biting. But it not the nails you need to be concerned about. It’s what biting your nails can do to your teeth. Nails are hard and strong and constant nibbling on them can cause cracks in the tooth enamel which can house food particles which can lead to tooth decay.
In addition, by putting your fingers in your mouth you are also subjecting your teeth to hand bacteria, which is the last thing you want because of its ability to generate infections. Also nail biting can lead to additional stress to the jaw and the attached muscles which, over time can change the shape of your face.
Toothbuster number 2 Chewing hard candy. The problem here is twofold. First the hardness of the candy and the pressure needed to crush it can cause cracks in the enamel. The second problem is that the sugar from the candy remains in your mouth for a considerable amount of time which gives bacteria the opportunity to use it as a breeding ground.
Toothbuster number 3 Chewing ice. It stands to reason that if you like hard candy that chewing ice would be a reasonable substitute.
Frozen water is nearly as strong as rocks and you certainly wouldn’t want to chew on something as hard as a rock regardless of its taste. If you have a strong urge to chew ice however, make an appointment with your medical professional, because the urge to chew ice in some cases has been linked to internal bleeding, a situation you’d want taken care of right away. You should also note that the below freezing temperature of the ice can make teeth brittle and subject to cracking.
Tooth buster number 4 Using your teeth as a kitchen utensil. How often have you used your teeth to open a sealed bag or twist off the cap on a bottle of soda? We’ve all done it, but remember you can easily replace a broken scissor or bottle opener. The same doesn’t apply to your teeth which are designed to last a lifetime when properly used and maintained.
To keep a healthy and properly maintained mouth brush twice a day, use a fluoride mouthwash and use an oral irrigator such as the oral breeze to blast potential breeding ground from your mouth and strengthen the bond between the teeth and the gum line.