It may seem like a no-brainer, but caring for your dental health is as important as caring for the rest of your body. Your teeth and gums are in near-constant use, so it’s essential to keep them clean and healthy, lest you want to spend thousands of dollars addressing some of the most common yet debilitating dental issues.
With that said, many bad habits can affect your dental health. If you’re unsure if you have any, consider checking out the following bad habits below.
1. Nightly Binge Eating
Those midnight snacks might not be helping your dental health at all. While you may think that eating at night enables you to stay “calm” and gets you to sleep, it actually has the opposite effect. Eating late at night can cause your blood sugar to drop (if you eat carbs) or rise (if you eat sugar).
If your body’s blood sugar drops, you might crave something sweet. Sugar will spike your blood sugar but ultimately crash it yet again. This cycle of highs and lows can contribute to severe problems like diabetes and heart disease, not to mention gum disease.
2. Drinking Too Much Coffee
A warm cup of coffee can feel like a godsend in the morning, but too much of a good thing is always bad. Coffee has been linked to an increased risk of oral cancer. Though this risk is low, it still poses a danger. While the amount of coffee you ingest will greatly determine your risk, it’s still something to think about.
Coffee is also a diuretic, meaning it can dehydrate your body. This is bad for your body in general but especially bad for your mouth. Without enough water, mouth bacteria can thrive, leading to tooth decay and gum disease.
3. Skipping Dental Visits
You’re probably aware that you should visit the dentist every six months. What you might be unaware of is that you should schedule regular dental cleanings as well.
Dental cleanings, also called prophylaxis, are tooth cleanings done by your dentist that include the removal of plaque and tartar buildup. They’re essential to preventing plaque and tartar buildup because they prevent bacteria from spreading to your gums and hardening into tartar.
4. Forgetting to Floss Regularly
You’ve probably heard your mother tell you that flossing isn’t optional. You’ve also probably heard your dentist tell you to floss. So why do so many people neglect to floss?
Flossing is an integral part of your dental health routine. It allows you to remove plaque from parts of your teeth that a toothbrush can’t reach. But flossing isn’t for everyone. If you have braces, forget about flossing between your teeth.
5. Brushing Harshly
All that scrubbing and polishing might seem like an excellent method to ensure you’ve effectively brushed every tooth, but you could be doing more harm than good.
Brushing too hard can damage the protective enamel layer of your teeth. In addition, it can cause your gums to recede and expose more roots than you might want. Instead, use a soft-bristled toothbrush and use a gentle, circular motion.
It’s clear that if you want to keep your teeth and gums healthy, you should do anything you can to avoid bad dental habits. By making sure that you don’t indulge in harmful practices, you can rest easy knowing that your mouth will stay the way it is now.
If you’re looking for the best dentist in Alexandria, VA, consider booking with Galleria Dental of Alexandria. We offer various dental services, including cosmetic dentistry. Book an appointment today!