Our Elmhurst Dentists Share 5 Habits That May Be Hurting Your Smile

Written by Dr. Scharfenberg on Jul 31, 2020

Our Elmhurst Dentists Share 5 Habits That May Be Hurting Your Smile

If you are trying to improve your oral hygiene game, our Elmhurst dentists are here to help. You probably already know that it is important to brush your teeth morning and night. But, did you know that there are small daily habit changes that you can make to protect your oral health? It’s easier than you think. Keep reading to learn more about harmful habits that you can cut from your daily routine.

  1. Forgetting to rinse

Start rinsing your smile after meals, snacks, and after you drink anything other than water. You can rinse vigorously with water, or with a mouth rinse. Ask your dentist if you don’t know what kind of mouth wash is right for you.

  1. Sipping and snacking all day

Because oral bacteria stay active—feeding on sugars and refined carbohydrates—for 20 to 30 minutes after you finish eating/drinking, it is actually better to consume goodies at specific times, rather than sipping or snacking continuously. We want to limit the amount of time that bacteria are feeding and growing.

  1. Chomping on hard substances

If you are regularly chewing hard candies, ice, or mints, you may be inadvertently damaging dental enamel. This habit causes small crack and chips to accumulate on your teeth.

  1. Brushing right after eating

When your dental enamel comes into contact with acidic substances, it is temporarily softened and weakened. After about a half of an hour your enamel is back to its regular strength, but you really want to refrain from brushing while your enamel is soft. That is why you should wait at least 30 minutes to use an abrasive toothbrush on your teeth.

  1. Picking at your smile

The best way to dislodge dental debris, food particles, and plaque is to use gentle floss to get between teeth. Pointy metal or wooden toothpicks can irritate sensitive oral tissues.

Our Elmhurst dentists are here to help you optimize your daily routine. If you have any questions, or you would like to schedule a personal consultation with our team, just give us a call!