Bellingham Dentist

COVID-19 Update & Appointment Check-in Protocol – Read Details »

Watching Out for Harmful Everyday Habits for Teeth

Surprising Things Doing More Harm Than Good

The following may be unhealthy habits that are destroying your oral health.

Consuming foods or drinks high in acidity. Fruits and fruit juices can be harmful to your teeth, containing high amounts of acid that can dissolve enamel. The acid content can alter the pH of your mouth that otherwise protects teeth from the damage of acid. This holds true for other consumables like lemon in hot water, apple cider vinegar, green juices, apples, oranges, etc. One can use a straw to avoid prolonged contact with teeth, or drinking water immediately after, or eating cheese, milk or yogurt which can neutralize the acid.

Not minding the fluoride in your toothpaste. There are just many types of toothpaste out there in the market, but do you ever look at labels to see that there’s fluoride in them? Fluoride makes enamel stronger, enabling it to be more resistant to demineralization caused by acids. It’s been well established that fluoride offers protection to teeth by preventing the decay process. You at least need 1,400ppm (parts per million) fluoride in your toothpaste for the right protection.

Brushing immediately after eating. This can be damaging to teeth when you brush straight away after consuming a highly acidic diet. This is brushing at wrong timing. If you brush straight after eating or drinking something acidic, like orange juice, you’re basically rubbing the acid into the teeth. Wait at least 30 minutes before you brush, or gargle with water, swishing it around your mouth, then wait awhile before you brush.

Clenching your teeth. If you feel anxious or stressed you can subconsciously clench your teeth at night, while sleeping. This can wear the enamel down, exposing the dentine, the soft part underneath the enamel. If it goes unchecked, your teeth actually wears down more quickly, causing sensitivity and giving teeth a yellow appearance.

Falling for DIY Teeth Whitening. Like some people, you might want to whiten your teeth on your own so you go and purchase toothpaste that may contain abrasive agents, such as those for severe whitening or charcoal toothpaste. They may cause damage because it’s the equivalent of scrubbing salt on your teeth. These products can temporarily lift stains, but if the enamel is damaged, that will actually leave teeth more open to staining over time. For safe and monitored whitening, opt for professional tooth whitening.


Lifestyle Changes in Bellingham

Know more about daily habits that can do more harm than good to your teeth. Visit us at Dr. Tetrick’s and learn about lifestyle modifications good for oral health.