3 habits that hurt your teeth

Life Lessons

3 habits that hurt your teeth

Bad dental habits you need to break today

Everyone is after the perfect pair of pearly whites, but some of the habits you may have thought were helping your teeth could be causing damage. Here are three bad dental habits to stop today.

The post-coffee brush
We’ve all been there, those mornings when you wake up in desperate need of that first cup of coffee. By the time you’ve gotten through your morning routine, that bitter taste sends you back to the sink for a good brush. What you don’t realize is that the sugar from the coffee is helping the bacteria soften your enamel. When you brush soft enamel, you leave your teeth vulnerable to toothbrush abrasion.

Sorry to say it, but it’s not just coffee that hurts your teeth before you brush. Sugars from any food or beverage can have the same effect on your teeth.

So what should you do? Brush your teeth before breakfast or at least an hour after you eat or drink.

The brushing scrub down
Yes, healthy teeth are strong. But brushing with a toothbrush that’s too firm or brushing too hard can cause more harm than good. While you may think you’re brushing up to have a sparkling white smile, you’re most likely irritating your gums and damaging the enamel on your teeth, which helps keep teeth healthy.

What should you do? Use a soft toothbrush. To get the right amount of pressure, think of brushing as a massage for your gums.

The toothpick frenzy
You may be thinking, “Why does every restaurant in town offer toothpicks at the door if they’re bad for my teeth?” The truth is toothpicks can be helpful when used properly. However, if you’re too aggressive in your quest for clean teeth you may harm your gums. Your gums are essential to your overall oral health, so treat them delicately.

What should you do? Skip the toothpick and grab some floss. If you just have to have a toothpick, be gentle, and if your gums start hurting put the toothpick down and rinse with some water instead.

The list could go on and on, but by breaking these three bad habits you can have better dental check-ups, improved oral health and a reduced risk of needing costly dental work. And remember, nothing beats visiting your dentist at regular recommended intervals.

This post is based on content that first appeared in SmileInSight.