It's not uncommon for the anxious person to develop different habits to cope. Even those who aren't anxious could develop the habit of biting onto different non-edible items simply to pass the time. Habitual chewing on your nails, pens, books, or even glasses can seem harmless at first glance, but it can negatively affect your teeth and health in the long term. If you enjoy biting on your nails or chewing on your pen, it's vital you understand the possible damages it can have on your oral health.
What Does Habitual Chewing Do To Your Teeth?
It all depends on what is being chewed on. Generally, any time you chew on something hard, whether it's edible or not, it can damage the enamel on your teeth. The first layer that helps protect your teeth is the enamel, and chewing on hard objects like pens or even ice can cause you to lose the strength of your enamel and cause sensitivity. Harder plastic in pens and the sharp edges can actually cause hairline cracks throughout the enamel, which appear as thin lines and look like tea stains. Habitual chewing can also lead to germs entering your mouth. The things you touch and grab throughout the day can put germs in your nails, and biting on your nails makes it easy to eat the germs you come in contact with.
Habitual Chewing Can Cause Accidents
Have you ever chewed on a pen and it slipped out of your mouth? It's easy to cut your gums when chewing if you're not careful. The same goes for your nails. Nails can get stuck in between teeth, and if bitten incorrectly, it can also cut your gums. Your nails may seem harmless to chew on, but the germs they contain could cause future damage.
If you seem to have a chewing habit and you feel your teeth could be in danger, let our dentists help you. It's hard to know how to care for your teeth if you don't know what to do and what your chewing habits have done to your mouth. We can look through what you need the most and provide the right procedures.