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In daily life, it’s easy to pick up some behaviors that can place our teeth at risk. If you are looking to improve your oral health, here are four habits to discontinue:

Nail Biting: Biting your fingernails can put you in danger of chipped teeth. Also, biting your nails causes your upper jaw to jut out. Over time this pressure can cause bite problems or TMD. To quit, try bitter-tasting nail polish, reducing stress, or doing something else with your hands.

Chewing Ice: Chewing ice is a frequent practice that leads to frequent issues. After all, when ice crystals are pushed against crystalline tooth enamel, one set of crystals is bound to break. Usually, it’s the ice—but occasionally, it’s the tooth. This leads to dental emergencies like chips, cracks, or other problems.

Tool Time: Your teeth are made for biting and chewing, not as scissors or placeholders. These functions put you at risk for dental emergencies and even spread germs. It also puts you at risk for injuring your jaw or even swallowing foreign objects.

Brushing Too Hard: Brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day is essential for excellent oral health. But remember: be gentle! Brushing too hard can cause damage to tooth enamel, and to your gums. It also wears down your toothbrush faster.

For more information on good oral health habits, or to book an appointment, call Woodstock & Manhattan Institute for Holistic Dentistry in Shokan, New York at 845-657-2322. Dr. Victor Zeines and our team look forward to taking your smile into the future!