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Bad Oral Health Habits

Whilst regular visits are essential in keeping your teeth health, the measures you take at home in your daily life is equally important to minimise the risk of damage. It’s all about adopting good dental habits like knowing which foods to avoid and changing behavioural patterns in your daily life.

Here are some bad dental habits you should always try to avoid and tips to help!

Over brushing your teeth

It is well known fact that the recommendation is to brush one’s teeth for 2 minutes twice daily. Less well known is the fact that it is possible to brush too hard and rather than cleaning better it causes damage to your teeth and recession of gums.

Always brush your teeth with a soft brush and gently massaging them rather than scrubbing them!

Over consumption of sugary foods

Oral bacteria living in your mouth feed on the sugars creating acid over time resulting in cavities. It is no secret that processed foods and drinks contain a lot of hidden sugars so check the nutritional content of foods.

When you do indulge in a treat, try not to graze over time and wash it down with a glass of water. Try to cut back cookies, cakes, soft drinks, lollies and other sugary foods!

Over consumption of acidic foods

The PH of your mouth is critical in maintaining the enamel of your teeth. Over consuming acidic foods such as citric foods, tomatoes, alcohol and soft drinks leads to erosion of the protective enamel and often leads to sensitivity. Current health trends to drink lemon water can be detrimental to the health of your teeth. Excessive alcohol consumption may increase the risk of developing oral and throat cancers.

Reduce the exposure to acidic foods. Drinking with a straw will reduce the effect of erosion by reducing the area of impact. Water is best!

Grinding your teeth

The causes of bruxism is still being studied with the Australian Dental Association noting that a combination of physical and psychological factors are believed to contribute, notably that it includes psychological stress, anxiety and tension and that night bruxism is a sleep disorder. Grinding can cause pain, chipping and cracking of your teeth.

Be mindful of grinding, identify triggers and try relaxation techniques to break the habit. In addition, a custom-made occlusal night splint may further protect your teeth!


Smoking is harmful to many parts of the body including the mouth. With the Australian Dental Journal indicating that smokers are about 3 times more likely to experience gum disease as compared to non-smokers.

Do your best to quit smoking and improve on daily preventative care such as flossing!

Biting hard substances….Ice cubes/Nails

Habitual biting of such things can damage your teeth as well as place stress on your jaw and may lead to jaw pain.

Be conscious of what triggers these habits and explore alternatives that won’t impact your oral health such a chewing gum!