Bad oral health habits

a female smiling

Do you remember the last time when someone smiled at you, and that made you smiled too? We do not realize that how important is that smile in our lives. It can change someone’s mood/day.

To keep that smile always the same, you need to maintain your oral hygiene. Otherwise, your teeth might look similar to her teeth.

She has a beautiful smile, but with good oral health, it could have looked better.

So, today we will discuss bad oral hygiene habits and the effects of bad oral health habits.

Bad Oral Health Habits

Hygiene related to our mouth is known as oral health. As we clean our bodies by bathing, it is also essential to keep our mouth clean and germs-free; otherwise, it might lead to many problems. So, let’s see some bad oral hygiene habits which one should avoid.

Mouth: The entry point

Our mouth is the entry point to all the respiratory and digestive tracts. Hence, bacteria, viruses, and fungi have direct reach to our tracts through our mouth, and it may lead to infection and diseases.

It has a mechanism to sense the external environment and defending against toxins.

Saliva present in the mouth neutralizes the acid produced by bacterias in the mouth, saving you from diseases.

Certain medications like decongestants, antihistamines, painkillers, and drinks like coffee and alcohol (diuretic drinks )reduce the saliva.

Brushing teeth daily can keep these bacterias under control; still, a little extra care might save you from tooth decay and gum diseases.

The research found that bacterias associated with severe gum diseases (periodontitis) might lead to diseases like diabetes, HIV/AIDS. It might lead to lowered body resistance to infections.

Gummies and teeth

These tangy and tasty gummies are made up of a mixture of sugar, syrup, glucose, starch, citric acid, gelatin, food coloring, and flavoring, making them not good for our teeth.

Gummies and candies can affect the enamel and promote tooth cavities. So, the less you have, the better it would be for your teeth.

It sticks to the teeth, and they are difficult to remove. Along with that, they are high on sugar that goes up to 1.3g of sugar/gummies.

gummies

Effects

The moment we eat a gummy, it starts a chemical reaction in our mouth with the bacterias present, creating an acidic substance that wears off the enamel. In this process, our teeth strength and hardness get compromised.

Gummies being sticky get stuck in between our teeth, which stops the flow of saliva to all the parts of the mouth, which becomes the barrier in neutralizing the mouth’s acids. If our teeth won’t have any defense, the gummies will be even more effective and will wear off enamel quicker.

People who consume toffees and gummies regularly may observe weak teeth that can crack or get a chip off at any time. It also leads to sensitivity to cold and hot.

Sipping on soda and sports drink

Almost everyone consumes soda every day. Soda drinks are the third most consumed beverage globally, with the per capita consumption of 29.14litres (7.7 gallons). Soda and sports drinks are high in sugar content which may become a reason for weight gain, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.

girl drinking soda

Effects

When it interacts with our teeth, the acid in these drinks bashes our teeth’ outer layer (enamel). They reduce the hardness of the teeth. Five days of sports drink regular consumption can start eroding enamel.

Soda is more harmful than sports drinks as it reaches the second layer of teeth- dentin, which may invite tooth decay.

Smoking leads to black teeth

Smoking is one of the leading reasons for gum diseases, and gum diseases can affect the bone structure that supports our teeth.

Smokers develop more tartar on teeth than non-smokers, which can lead to periodontal (gum) disease.

Smoking and other tobacco products impact our immune system, making it difficult for our body to stand in front of gum infections. Moreover, if you already have an infection, then smoking slows down the healing process.

Effects

Chemicals in tobacco lead to a lower saliva flow in the mouth, making it easier for bacteria to stick teeth and gums.

The bacteria-laden plaque may develop, and if not removed/cleaned daily, it may turn to tartar, also known as calculus. Calculus requires professional cleaners to clean it.

Smokeless tobacco loosens the gums as a result of irritated gum tissues. Loose teeth have space where bacteria can settle in.

As per research, 90% of people who had mouth, lips, and throat cancer consumed tobacco in any form.

Smoking may also lead to leukoplakia (white patches inside the mouth).

Teeth: The ultimate tool

Teeth help us eat and chew food properly, and they also support cheeks and lips but using teeth as a tool to cut and open things is not good.

When we do not have tools nearby us, we make our teeth as a tool and use them to tear and open stuff, but it damages them.

using teeth as a tool

Affects

Opening bottles with teeth can crack/chip your teeth. Moreover, it may also lead to increased chances of tooth wear, poor jaw alignment, and jaw pain.

Never use your teeth to cut tape, wire, clothing tags, etc.

Holding things between your teeth can also be dangerous, and that might lead to accelerated wear and tear of them; along with that, an individual might sneeze or hiccup while holding them, which might choke that individual.

Some people have a habit of chewing things, be it pencil, pen, or anything, to satisfy the sensations they get. Avoid chewing anything apart from food as it might put your teeth at risk.

Piercing

Not everything that seems cool is cool. Oral piercing (around/ in the mouth) looks nice but can lead to infection. Therefore, keeping your piercing clean is essential.

However, oral piercings have a high chance of infection because of the location. Our mouth has millions of bacterias, and those bacterias might enter the piercing and lead to infection.

Still, if you consider getting pierced, then keep few things in mind:

  • Make sure you use jewelry that is according to surgical implant grade standards.
  • To minimize the chances of damage, use polymer balls and prefer using small balls for the underside tongue area to avoid contact with soft tissues.
  • Along with style, care goes hand in hand. Ensure to clean your jewelry and to rinse your mouth after every meal.
  • Regularly, keep a check if the jewelry is tight enough; otherwise, you might swallow it.
  • While you are healing, avoid kissing as that will bring you in contact with the other person’s saliva.
  • Avoid spicy, acidic food, coffee, tea, and other such edibles and beverages.
lip piercing

Affects

There are many possible risks and effects it might lead to:

  • While eating, you might bite on it, and that can cost you your precious teeth.
  • If the jewelry is loose, then it might get off and can choke.
  • A swollen tongue might make it difficult for you to breathe.
  • People with heart disease have the risk of damaging your heart valves

Teeth: Our ice crusher

As summers approach, our beverages change from hot coffee to coolers, soda, and mojitos. These on the rocks drinks make us feel good, but those ice does not make our teeth feel good.

Ice may seem harmless, but it may damage your enamel and gums if crushed with teeth. Here are few tips that might save your teeth:

  • Let it melt. The intent of adding ice is to make the drink cool. Let the ice melt even that will serve the purpose.
  • Prefer having slush over ice cubes. Slush or shaved ice is soft ice. It will be a win-win situation.
  • If you feel the need to crush, it sounds complicated or unrealistic but prefer having any fruit or slice of something else to serve the purpose.

Effects

Crushing ice makes the strongest part of the teeth enamel erode. Enamel erosion can make your teeth extremely sensitive to hot and cold consumables.

Iron deficiency anemia can also be the reason for the craving for crushing ice. It is a severe problem, and if not treated at the early stage, it may lead to enlargement of heart and heart failure.

It may also lead to premature birth and low birth weight in the case of pregnancy.

Brushing teeth too hard

Getting serious about maintaining your oral hygiene is great, but getting over-enthusiastic for that and brushing too hard might affect instead of improving your oral hygiene.

Effects

Brushing too hard may erode enamel. Though enamel is the hardest substance in the body but brushing too hard may even lead to erosion.

It may also lead to shrinkage of gum tissues, and if it continues for a longer time, it may expose the roots of your teeth.

Roots are more prone to decay than the top portion as it does not have enamel’s protective layer.

Conclusion

Just by keeping certain things in mind, you can maintain your sparkling teeth forever without any hassle. Get in touch with a dentist if the situation gets serious.