Habits that Ruin Your Teeth
Tooth loss may not be on your radar as a potential problem. However, tooth loss can be a reality one day if you do not properly care for your teeth. Did you know that 25% of Americans over the age of sixty-five have lost all of their teeth? Brushing, flossing and attending your six-month dental cleanings are very important to preserve your pearly whites as you age. However, you need to be aware of some common habits you may be engaging in right now that are having a negative impact on your oral health.
Sugar – Yes, it is true what they say; sugar is bad for your teeth. Sticky sugars like candy or gummies are particularly harmful as they adhere to your tooth’s surface and will eventually destroy your tooth’s enamel. Of course if you do treat yourself periodically, make sure you brush your teeth right away so the sugar does not sit on your teeth for a long period of time.
Drinks – There are certain beverages your teeth simply do not like, especially acidic ones. Sodas, whether Diet or regular, are highly acidic and will eat away at your tooth’s enamel. Alcoholic beverages such as wine can also damage your teeth. Lastly, fruit juices often carry that high sugar content that can wreck your teeth. You do not necessarily have to avoid your favorite drinks altogether, just be sure to at least rinse with water after you indulge.
Smoking – It is a simple fact here. Smoking and chewing tobacco can wreak havoc on your dental health. Nicotine can yellow the teeth’s enamel and increases your risk for periodontal disease and oral cancer.
Sports — Are you protecting your teeth while you play contact sports? Mouthguards are becoming more and more popular, especially in young athletes. You can purchase one at a sporting goods store or have your dentist make a custom mouthguard.
Stress — If you react to stress by clenching or grinding your teeth, you are at risk for damaging your teeth. You may not even be aware of it if you grind your teeth during the night. A nighttime mouthguard from your dentist can be your answer to effectively stop your grinding habit.
If you have already experienced tooth loss, you can still save your smile. Fortunately, today there are many good options for patients with missing teeth. Gilreath Dental Associates offers tooth replacement methods such as dentures, dental implants, partials or bridges.
Posted on behalf of Dr. Paul Gilreath IV, Gilreath Dental Associates