Thanks to modern advancements in dentistry, your teeth can last for a lifetime with the right care over the years. While routine visits to your dentist in Las Cruces are crucial to your oral health, the things you do at home in between your semi-annual appointments are equally important. Believe it or not, you may be unknowingly placing your dental health at risk of complications. Here are 5 bad habits you need to break to ensure your smile lasts.
1. Using your teeth as tools.
We’re all guilty of tearing open a candy wrapper with our teeth. Although your teeth are handy tools, you are risking a dental emergency. Using your teeth as tools can cause chips or fractures. In some cases, you may even loosen one. While it may take a few minutes longer, it’s best to get the right tool for the job instead of using your teeth to open packages or bottles.
2. Chewing on inedible objects.
Do you have a nervous habit of chewing on your nails? Maybe you tend to gnaw on a pencil while you’re concentrating? No matter the object, you’re causing unnecessary wear on your enamel. Not to mention, it isn’t very sanitary. If you need something to chew on, reach for a piece of sugarless gum.
3. Consuming too much sugar.
If you have a sweet tooth, you might want to limit how often you give in to it. Sugar combines with harmful bacteria in your mouth, creating an acidic plaque that will slowly eat away at your enamel. Over time, a small hole will form, called a cavity. While it’s fine to have sugar in moderation, it’s best to snack on fresh fruits and vegetables, or low-fat dairy products.
4. Skipping brushing before bed.
You know you’re supposed to brush your teeth after breakfast and dinner, but it’s easy to climb into bed after a long day without performing your nightly oral hygiene ritual. This allows bad bacteria to thrive in your mouth overnight, increasing your risk of gum disease and tooth decay. Although you might be tired, it’s best to take the time to clean all surfaces of your teeth for at least 2 minutes before calling it a night.
5. Using Tobacco Products
You know tobacco isn’t good for your general health, but did you know it’s also bad for your smile? Not only can it increase your risk of stains, tooth decay, and gum disease but also oral cancer. It’s best to stop smoking and have a regular oral cancer screening with your dentist.
Invest in a Healthy Smile Today
You can promote how long your smile lasts by taking the time to care for your teeth and gums at home while maintaining routine preventive dental appointments. If you’re concerned about any bad habits, discuss them with your dentist during your next visit.
About Dr. Ramon M. Ortiz
Dr. Ramon M. Ortiz has undergone continuing education courses to provide advanced dental services. He embraces the latest technologies to deliver world-class care, including CEREC same-day dentistry. If you’re looking for a modern dental office for high-quality care, contact our office today for an appointment.