Smile is one of the first things people will notice about you. And it conveys so much. A smile can reflect your happiness and radiate warmth. Your smile can light up a room and make others smile. So, you better take care of that smile.
According to WHO, nearly 100% of adults have at least one dental cavity and between 15 and 20 percent of adults ages 35 - 44 have severe gum disease. Let us see some of the habits that might be causing damage to teeth and leading to a bad smile as well:
Before that here are some common symptoms of poor oral hygiene:
· Bleeding gums
· Bad breath
· Pain in chewing food
· Chronic ulcers/sores
· Sensitivity to hold/cold beverages
If you are suffering from any of the above oral issues/problems, we suggest you should read about the habits that might be causing them and also consult a dentist. Let us look at 7 such habits that will take your smile from ‘wow’ to ‘meh’.
2. Grinding and Clenching Your Teeth
3. Improper/Aggressive Brushing
4. Not Flossing Properly
5. Too Much Whitening
6. Eating Stain Causing Foods
7. Drinking Soft Drinks
If you are a smoker, it is time to kick the butt. Cigarettes and tobacco use are bad for your teeth and smile apart from being harmful to health.
Smoking turns your teeth yellow and harbours bacteria. Moreover, it also causes gum inflammation, tooth loss, and tooth decay. Do you want a smile with any of these conditions? Of course not!
Healthier Habit: You can ask your doctor about nicotine patches for your urges or consult a doctor to create a quitting plan altogether.
Involuntary and voluntary grinding and clenching of the teeth will also spoil your smile. Stress can also lead to teeth grinding. When you clench and grind your teeth, over time the teeth will start to appear shorter and uneven. A smile with uneven teeth is a massive no-no.
Grinding also leads to problems like jaw pain, tension headaches, and tooth loss. Fracture lines are another side effect of constant grinding and clenching.
Healthier habit: For stress-induced grinding, you might consider doing corrective exercises or counselling or else you can consult your dentist about a mouthguard
Did you know that using the wrong brush or not brushing the right way can affect your smile? Stay away from hard and stiff bristles and choose a soft-bristled toothbrush. The former will irritate the gums and cause bleeding as well. With age, the gums also push back leading to teeth sensitivity as the gums exposes roots of the roots containing cementum which is easily worn away with aggressive brushing.
The ideal frequency of brushing is 3 times per day. Don’t do it more than that. Brushing too hard and too often can expose the root of the tooth and erode tooth enamel, both of which will impact your smile.
Healthier Habit: Gently massage your teeth with soft-bristled toothbrush and ask your dentist about which toothbrush might suit best for you
So you brushed your teeth and skipped the flossing. What’s the big deal, right? Well, it turns out that flossing is as important as brushing. It can prevent various gum diseases and tooth loss.
Flossing helps in removing plaque and food particles that brushing may have missed. You do not want to be caught smiling with visible plaque or food stuck between your teeth!
Healthier Habit: Consider antiseptic rinses along with flossing to prevent tooth decay
Yes, white teeth look beautiful when you smile but too much whitening can do more harm than good. Choose a teeth whitening product that has a mild bleaching agent.
At-home teeth whitening products contain peroxides, typically carbamide peroxide, in various concentrations of 10% to 20%. Choose a product with a mid-range bleaching agent and follow the instructions carefully.
If you leave the whitening strip or gel for too long or use it more often than advised, it will increase the risk of gum inflammation. Super white teeth may look good when you smile, not so much when they come along with inflamed gums.
Healthier Habit: Prefer mild whitening agents and do not apply these products regularly
Pigmented food will leave your teeth stained and smile flawed. Foods like blackberries, blueberries, coffee, wine, turmeric, beets, and pomegranate will stain your teeth and make you look older.
While these are healthy foods and you shouldn’t skip them, rinse your mouth as soon as you eat or drink them. Don’t let delicious, healthy food ruin your smile.
Healthier Habit: Consider rinsing your mouth with water post-consumption of stain-causing foods
The next time you go out or plop on your couch to watch a movie with a tub of popcorn, do yourself a favour and skip the soda. Soft drinks are loaded with sugar that can increase the risk of cavities, gum infection, and tooth decay.
Moreover, sodas and soft drinks cause the enamel to thin and make the next layer of the tooth, known as dentin, visible. Dentin is darker and makes the teeth look yellow.
Ditch that soft drink now. No, we don’t care if it’s tasty or not, just ditch it.
Healthier Habit: If you can’t ditch soft drinks, try sipping it through a straw to reduce its exposure to tooth enamel. Make sure the straw is not positioned against the teeth.
Maintain good dental hygiene practices like brushing and flossing regularly. If you are looking to better your smile through a smile makeover, book a scan or a free smile assessment with us.
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