Good oral health begins with healthy habits. There are many things we can do each day to maintain our oral health and prevent problems. However, there are many things that we do daily that can damage our oral health.
- Drinking and Smoking
While it’s true that inhaling smoke from a cigarette or pipe can lead to oral cancer, it’s oral disease symptoms like tooth discoloration, gum disease, and bad breath that are the more immediate concern. And unfortunately, these aren’t the only long-term consequences of tobacco use. In addition to increasing your risk for heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, and a variety of other illnesses, the habit has also been linked to infertility in men.
Also, drinking too much alcohol can cause a variety of oral health issues, including tooth decay, dry mouth, and oral cancer. That’s why it’s important to monitor your alcohol consumption to ensure you’re only consuming in moderation.
- Not Flossing Regularly
If you don’t floss regularly, the plaque and bacteria that collect between your teeth can eventually harden into tartar and become too difficult to remove with simple brushing. Regular flossing helps prevent this buildup from occurring in the first place. It also ensures that your gums remain healthy throughout your life. To ensure you’re cleaning your teeth properly, use about 20 inches of dental floss to gently clean between all your teeth and gums. Hold onto each end and gently curve it around each tooth to clean it thoroughly before pulling it through the space again. If you have a hard time using traditional string floss, try an interdental brush instead.
- Ignoring Your Dental Problems
Many people tend to ignore their dental problems, thinking that if they don’t feel pain or discomfort, everything is okay. However, your oral health is just as important to your body as the health of any other organ or system. If you don’t take proper care of your teeth, you run the risk of cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. Neglecting to take care of your mouth can also lead to more serious issues, such as heart disease and diabetes. Make sure you schedule regular checkups with your dentist so you can catch any potential problems before they become serious.
- Using Teeth for Things They Shouldn’t Be Used For
Did you know that chewing on ice and hard candy can lead to cracks and chips in your teeth? Unfortunately, this is just one of the many habits that can damage your oral health. In fact, other behaviors like biting nails, grinding teeth, and using teeth to open packages can also wreak havoc on your teeth. Avoiding these bad habits can protect your teeth and gums from damage. If you notice any symptoms of tooth damage, such as sensitivity, pain, or visible fractures, contact our office to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Early intervention is key when it comes to treating damaged teeth and preventing complications down the road.
Schedule an appointment with Dr. Angela An, D.D.S. General Dentistry, to learn more about maintaining good oral health. We are located at 490 Post St #1020, San Francisco, CA 94102. Contact us at (415) 291-8668 or visit our website for more information.