While at work you may fall victim to some habits that can ruin your teeth. Some of these things are done subconsciously and the consequences are irreversible. Try to be more aware of what you?re doing and turn some of these bad work habits that can ruin your teeth into more positive and productive ones.
- Chewing on Pens & Pencils
First of all, you don?t know who else has been sucking on that pen or what kind of gross germs are living on it and you?re sticking it in your mouth? Gross. Secondly, biting on something hard like this can cause your teeth to crack or break.? Cracked and broken teeth can be difficult to treat and may end up needing to be removed completely. Lastly, grinding on a pen or pencil will make your teeth wear down which can lead to temperature sensitivity and even jaw pain.
- Chewing Ice
Like chewing on pens this is a bad habit that can cause teeth to break.? If you must chew on ice to stay awake or for whatever reason, opt for crushed ?soft? ice rather than large ice cubes. Or better yet, don?t chew on the ice at all, just set it in your mouth and let it melt before you swallow.
Did you know that the urge to constantly chew ice has been linked to anemia? If this is a habit you can?t break you may want to visit your Newport Beach medical doctor to get some blood work done.
- Chewing Gum
Chewing gum actually has its pros and cons.? Gum that contains sugar is terrible for your oral health because it causes cavities to form rapidly. Excessively chewing gum can result in jaw pain which can lead to TMJ disorder, grinding, and clenching.
On the other hand, this work habit does have some benefits. Studies have shown that chewing gum helps with concentration for short periods of time.
Also, a natural ingredient known as xylitol that is found in some sugar-free gum is phenomenal at cleaning your teeth and preventing decay. After meals if you don?t have a toothbrush, xylitol is effective for lowering plaque levels.
- Sipping All Day
A lot of people that work at a desk keep a drink with them and sip on it every few minutes throughout their day.? Unless you?re drinking water, this is a bad habit to have. Acidic and sugary drinks cause your mouth to be constantly exposed to a cavity-causing environment. If you must drink soda, sports drinks, or lemon water, than do it at once and rinse your mouth out. Don?t let the beverage sit on your teeth all day.
- Neglecting to Brush After Meals
Brushing your teeth shouldn?t be limited to only taking place in your home. Be prepared when you?re at work by having a travel oral health care kit. Keep a toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, and floss handy. Place the kit in your purse, desk, locker, or briefcase.? Don?t let it collect dust, make an effort to use it.? All you need is a couple of minutes. Come back from lunch early so that you have time to address your dental needs. Floss your teeth at your desk.?Some of your co-workers may think it?s gross that you do, but you?ll be the one laughing when you see them having to take off extra time for their dental work.
Everyone knows that smoking and tobacco use is a bad habit to have. It can cause oral cancer, gum disease, and tooth loss. We also know how hard of a habit it is to break; it takes a lot of commitment. Your medical doctor may be able to prescribe a medication to help you quit.
If you?re tempted by co-workers to go on a cigarette break, try to remove yourself from the situation.? Try going for a walk around the block instead.
- Nail Biting
Biting your nails may be something that you aren?t even aware that you do when you?re bored, or even concentrating hard. Nail biting means your jaw has to be put in some compromising positions which can lead to chronic pain.
- Energy Drinks or Coffee
We?ve probably all suffered from afternoon sleepiness at work. It?s easy to grab an energy drink or coffee, but try your best to avoid this temptation.? Coffee is very acidic and most energy drinks are packed with sugar.? These ingredients can wreak havoc on your oral health so you definitely don?t want to turn this into a regular afternoon routine.
If you struggle with bad work habits and your teeth have suffered the consequence, The Center for Restorative & Cosmetic Dentistry can help. Dr. Desiree Yazdan, our Newport Beach dentist, can help fix you up again. Together we can get your mouth healthy and keep it that way. Give us a call today.