12 Things You’re Doing That Are Hurting Your Teeth

According to our Mesa, Arizona dentist, having healthy teeth comes down to more than just brushing twice a day.  There are many habits and choices that we make which can affect our teeth, and it’s likely that you’ve never stopped to consider them. If you do any of the following, then it could be compromising your smile more than you know.

  1. Smoking, Smokeless Tobacco Vaping, or E-Cigs

Long-term smoking leads to a long list of side effects. Some of which include oral cancer, bad breath, and heavily stained teeth.

Smokeless tobacco can also stain teeth, as well as cause gum irritation and periodontal disease.

With vapes and e-cigs being a fairly new trend, there’s still a lot to be learned about these vises.  We do already know that they can cause gum damage, as well as damage to the cells in your mouth.

  1. Drinking Soft Drinks (Soda)

Certain sodas are very dark and can stain your teeth.  They also contain a ton of sugars and artificial sweeteners, which leads to cavities.  In addition, the acidity in many soft drinks is enough to corrode your teeth and eat away at the enamel. 

Drinking a soda every now and then is fine.  As a way to neutralize the acidity that soda leaves behind, you can rinse your mouth out with water afterward. Also, it’s best to drink it and be done, don’t sip on soft drinks all day as this will just keep your mouth in a constant acidic level. 

  1. Drinking Red Wine, Coffee and Tea

Sure, drinking red wine may be good for your heart, and a burst of caffeine from your morning coffee or tea will help you seize the day, but habitually drinking these things will lead to stained teeth. 

  1. Eating Heavily Pigmented Foo

Whether you’re eating natural blueberries or a cup of Hawaiian ice doused in food coloring, heavily pigmented foods like these can lead to stubborn stains on your teeth. 

  1. Eating Ice


Chomping on ice can cause your teeth and dental work to break.  The damage may start out small, like a minuscule crack, but eventually, you may be dealing with a full-on broken tooth. The expanding and contracting because of temperature changes are just as bad as the ice’s hard texture.

  1. Sticky Foods

Sticky foods like certain candies get lodged between your teeth and it’s very difficult to clean out. If you don’t remove all of the candy, then the sugar within it causes you to have cavities that’ll require dental work. In addition, these types of foods can stick to your dental work and pull fillings out, or loosen crowns.

  1. Nail Biting

In addition to being unhygienic, biting your nails can cause you to chip or gradually wear down your front teeth. 

  1. Opening Things With Your Teeth

Opening bottles, carrying your purse, or cutting fishing line with your teeth is something that you should avoid at all costs. Even if it’s a rare occurrence, biting into these types of things at the wrong angle can severely damage your teeth.

  1. Oral Piercings

Tongue and lip piercings can cause gum loss and tooth wear due to the constant rubbing. Plus if you bite down wrong just one time, you can split a tooth in half.

  1. Teeth Grinding and Clenching

Both grinding and clenching have severe side effects that include tooth sensitivity, headaches, earaches, jaw pain, worn teeth, teeth that are notched at the gum, and gum recession. While some people are aware that they grind or clench, others are often told by their sleep partner, or our dentist can see evidence by examining your teeth.

  1. Brushing Too Hard

Brushing too hard causes gum recession, which leads to tooth sensitivity and discoloration.  To avoid brushing too hard, try using an electric toothbrush which will provide you with exactly the right amount of pressure. If you don’t like the idea of an electric toothbrush, then opt for a manual one that has soft or extra-soft bristles.  When brushing, do so gently and don’t bear down on the handle. Keep in mind that it’s the tips of the bristles that do the cleaning. If you push too hard, you’re essentially brushing your teeth with the sides of the bristles, which is less effective. 

  1. Not Brushing Properly

Are you one of those people that don’t really pay attention to what they’re doing when they brush their teeth?  Not focusing on what you’re brushing and for how long can cause you to do an inefficient job at cleaning. When brushing your teeth, make sure that you gently scrub all surfaces of each tooth.

Additional Oral Care Tips

For personalized oral care tips, visit Eastport Dental in Mesa, Arizona.  We look forward to meeting you!

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