Bad habits – 7 terrific ways to ruin your teeth


Dr Aran Moorthy

This article was written by Australian dental surgeon Dr Aran Moorthy, BDS. Dr Moorthy has a Bachelor of Dental Surgery from the University of Adelaide. You can read more about Dr Moorthy here >

Dr Anthony Poli at Mills Rd Dental Centre

Want dental problems? Like the idea of haemorrhaging cash on unnecessary dental appointments?

Why not develop a couple of bad dental habits that could chip, stain, realign or possibly even rot your teeth to the core.

Are you in? Let’s do this!


Lighting up

Sure, lighting up a cigarette may not seem as cool as it used to, but it can still pack a punch. Smoke cigarettes and you can look forward to yellow teeth, increased risk of bacterial infection, reduced sense of smell and taste, bad breath, myriad health complaints – and fewer friends. Cancer and lung disease are just the icing on the cake.


Forgetting to floss

Forgetting to floss is handy, especially at bedtime. After all, who’s got the time? There is an endless stream of important things you could do in 60 seconds. And when you think of them, hit us with an email and let us know.

Give up on flossing, and you can look forward to plaque buildup on those hard-to-reach areas between your teeth. With any luck, this can lead to gum disease, bad breath and maybe even cavities.


Swallowing pool water

Sometimes, drinking regular tap water is just too sensible. Besides, there’s a certain charm in knowing that you’re not the only one that’s been bathing in the water you’re drinking.

So, if it’s too hard to get out of the pool for a swig of regular tap water, quietly sip some eau de pool and let the acid gently corrode your tooth enamel.


Sucking ice cubes

If you thought chewing ice cubes was just a fun way to annoy people at parties, think again. With a bit of luck, regularly chomping on ice can break or chip your teeth, requiring a dental filling or if you’re lucky, even a crown!


Sucking lemons

Here’s the thing: initially, this idea might seem unappealing, but sucking lemons is an acquired taste, and it may even make you look a bit special. Regular sucking highly acidic lemon juice can erode your teeth and damage the enamel. Plus your teeth will appear darker and become far more sensitive – which will give you something else to complain about to your family and friends.


Thumb sucking

Why should two-year-olds have all the fun? Regularly sucking your thumb at any time of your life with permanent teeth (usually around 5 to 6 years of age) is a great way to misalign them. More than giving you a compromised appearance, thumb sucking can hamper chewing and even talking. If your teeth become seriously misaligned, you may need expensive, time-consuming orthodontic work or maybe just clear aligners to correct your problem.


Excessively thorough brushing

Like to overdo things? Then this one’s got your name on it. Don’t be content with light, thorough tooth brushing with a soft brush. Get stuck in there and do a proper job. Using a firm bristle, brush vigourously – and don’t spare your gums. Keep at it like you’re in the Bathroom Floor Scrubbing Olympics and you can look forward to irritated gums, enamel abrasion and tooth sensitivity. Well done, you!

This blog page has been fact-checked by Dentist Dr Aran Moorthy.

Book in for a dental check-up today!

Don’t fall prey  to avoidable bad habits that can ruin your teeth. Get your teeth checked today.

Remember, prevention is better than cure!

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