4 Bad Oral Habits That Make Your Dentist Mental

It’s impolite to crack your knuckles and chew on your hair. Slouching and dragging your feet are practically punishable by law. And in some social circles, coughing and sneezing without covering up your mouth might as well be capital crimes.

Now, your dentist might not mind if you mumble or use verbal ticks more frequently than adjectives, but they’ll definitely get upset if you don’t stop biting your nails. And, at least as long as you’re in the dentist’s chair, please do cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.

Habits that are bad for your teeth also happen to be really bad for your dentist’s mental health. So, before you go and do something crazy like open a bag of chips with your incisors, think of your dentist—and your brilliant smile.

Nail Biting

Unless you’re watching a horror movie or a shootout in the seventh game of the Stanley Cup playoffs then there’s no excuse for biting your nails. Unless, of course, you simply couldn’t find the nail clippers.

Over time, nail biting erodes tooth enamel and increases your chances of developing tooth decay. And even though nails are soft compared to teeth, overzealous biters run the risk of damaging their teeth. Ask your dentist the next time you see them how many times they’ve treated chips and cracks from nail biting… their answer might shock you.

Lastly, nail biting increases your chances of developing gum disease. Unless you have a habit of washing your hands every hour on the hour, chances are your hands are dirtier than they look. If you’re biting your nails, bacteria on your hands can find their way into your mouth and burrow beneath your gumline. Ew.


Of all the bad habits for your teeth, smoking might be the hardest one to kick—but, unless your goal is to have your dentist committed, kick it you must.

Tobacco products such as cigarettes are notoriously detrimental to your oral health. They decrease blood flow to your gums—and, thusly, your teeth—and increase your chances of developing gum disease. Similarly, tobacco products reduce your production of saliva which further reduces your body’s ability to fight off smile-ruining infections.

Unfortunately, there are no two ways about it. If you want to keep your teeth healthy and your dentist out of a strait jacket, you’ll have to put that cigarette out once and for all.

Brushing Too Hard

We all want a whiter, brighter smile but scrubbing your teeth like you’re trying to remove red wine stains from the carpet won’t help.

Brushing extra hard might seem like a good way to whiten your teeth—after all, it works on your dishes—but it’s actually bad for your teeth and gums. While soft-bristled toothbrushes won’t do too much damage to your teeth, if you brush too hard you might as well drag an emery board across your gums.

Applying too much pressure when you brush your teeth will erode soft tissues like your gums. Raw, irritated and exposed gums can lead to infection, abscess and gum disease. However, if you absolutely must apply elbow grease, we have some grout that you can work on.

The Munchies

We get it. There isn’t a pantry large enough that could fit all of your favourite snacks. There also isn’t a toothpaste powerful enough to protect your teeth from all of those sugary goodies.

Binge eating the contents of your fridge is, surprisingly, not only bad for your waistline but your gumline as well. The bad bacteria in your mouth that cause tooth decay feed on the scraps of food that don’t quite make it down the hatch. So, in effect, a snacking habit acts like a 24/7, all-you-can-eat buffet for cavity-causing bacteria.

Oftentimes, snacking is a side effect of boredom or an oral fixation. Instead of reaching for that licorice, try chewing on some sugar-free gum—your teeth will thank you and your dentist will stop pulling out their hair.


We’re Going Dental

Forget about pearly white smiles. Break those bad habits to protect your dentist’s mental, we mean, dental health. If you need some help putting out that cigarette or brushing your teeth with an artist’s touch then book your next appointment with Dawson Dental today. We’re “crazy” about healthy smiles.