4 Ways You May Be Harming Your Smile

added on: March 22, 2016
harming smile

At our Manassas, Reston, and Gainesville dental offices, we’re all about getting and keeping smiles in their best shape possible. But we need your help. When it comes to maintaining a healthy mouth, there are few things we recommend avoiding, or at least using in moderation. Check out our list of things that may be harming your smile and keeping you from optimal dental health.  

  • Medicating. Although spring has sprung, allergies or the lingering winter cold may be causing some annoying coughs. To treat them, we often turn to cough drops, which are a great remedy for relief. However, they’re not so great for teeth. Cough drops are packed with sugar and are usually left in the mouth for at least a few minutes. This causes teeth be exposed to the cavity-causing sugar the entire time.
  • Smoking. Among many other whole-body concerns, smoking greatly increases your risk for oral cancer. It, along with smokeless tobacco, can cause staining of the teeth and gum disease. It’s even common for tobacco users to have more tooth loss than non-users.
  • Snacking. When we refer to snacking, we don’t mean the handful of nuts you may eat in between lunch and dinner. We’re more concerned with constant snacking throughout the day. The more food that’s consumed, and the longer teeth are exposed to food particles, the more likely bacteria will feed on leftovers remaining in tooth crevices, increasing the chance of cavities.
  • Rehydrating. After a tough workout or during an intense sporting competition, a common way to rehydrate is with popular sports drinks. And while they work to replenish what we lose when we sweat, they can harm teeth. Usually containing a lot of sugar, sports drinks allow bacteria to feed on the sugar creating acid that can eat away at enamel.
  • Grinding. Whether it’s due to stress, an improper bite alignment, or nighttime bruxism, grinding teeth can cause some serious damage like chips, cracks, and worn down, shortened teeth. Talk with your dentist Northern Virginia to see if a protective mouthguard is right for you.

Now that you know some common ways you may be harming your teeth, let’s talk about how you can keep them healthy. First, always make sure to brush twice a day and floss once. Second, maintain regular checkups with your dentist. Proper dental care is a must for a healthy, happy smile.

If you’re looking for a dentist you can trust, give our Manassas, Reston, or Gainesville dental office a call today!

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