Are your pearly whites not as bright as you would like? Or perhaps, your smile is more crooked than captivating? Whatever the issue with the appearance of your teeth, it could be your daily habits that are contributing to your less than perfect grin.
From smoking to grinding, not flossing to too much whitening, discover six habits that are ruining your smile.
1. Smoking tobacco
There aren’t many parts of your body that smoking doesn’t have a negative effect on, and this includes your teeth. Known for turning your teeth yellow, smoking can also cause gum inflammation, tooth loss, and tooth decay.
If you are struggling to give up your daily smokes, you might want to ask your doctor for nicotine patches.
2. Grinding your teeth
If you grind your teeth at night (whether voluntarily or involuntarily), this can have a hugely detrimental impact on your smile. When you regularly grind and clench your teeth, your teeth will slowly start to become shortened and uneven over time.
Plus, teeth grinding can cause other health problems such as headaches, jaw ache, and tooth loss.
3. Aggressive brushing
You may think that brushing your teeth with a hard and stiff-bristled brush will offer the most effective way to remove plaque and bacteria, but this is actually very bad for your teeth. With the ability to cause bleeding gums and tooth sensitivity, it is a much better idea to invest in a soft-bristled brush and to brush more frequently rather than more aggressively.
If you don’t know which brush to use for you or your children, ask your family dentist for advice.
4. Too much whitening
Whitening products have gained a lot of popularity in the U.S. as people try to emulate their favorite celebrities and enjoy a brighter smile. However, you should know that most whitening kits contain peroxides that can increase the risk of gum inflammation.
If you can’t give up at-home whitening, look for a kit that only contains a mild bleaching agent and make sure that you don’t leave the strip on for longer than the recommended time.
5. Eating stain-causing foods
Who doesn’t love a cup or three of coffee in the morning? Or a large glass of red wine after a long day at work? Unfortunately, these popular treats can lead to staining of your teeth, which can be hard to get rid of.
Other common culprits include foods such as blackberries, blueberries, turmeric, beets, and pomegranate.
Again, if you can’t bear to give up your favorite foods and drinks, you need to be rinsing your mouth out. Grab a glass of water and swill it around in your mouth before spitting it out.
6. Crunching ice
You may not even know that you are doing it, but crunching ice can break down enamel and lead to a whole host of issues such as cracked and chipped teeth and even tooth loss.
Therefore, next time you take a cube of ice in your mouth, be sure to suck on it rather than crunch. Or, if you can’t be trusted not to bite, invest in some artificial ice for your freezer.