Changing Poor Oral Habits for the Upcoming New Year

Now that November has arrived, the thoughts start to trickle in about ways to improve your life in the upcoming year. Those who choose New Year’s resolutions are resolving to do more of this or less of that. This is a perfect time to analyze your oral health and bad habits that can be causing harm to your teeth or costing you more money. 

For years, you have heard about the importance of brushing twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist every six months. While this is all needed and necessary to maintain proper oral health, there are a number of not-so-great habits that can be reversing all of the positive benefits that you have been working hard to achieve. If you are guilty of one of these habits, this would be a great opportunity to change your ways for the new year:

Crunching Ice

  • While teeth are meant for chewing, they are not meant for crunching ice. Crunching ice can cause the teeth to crack, chip, and break. Chewing on extremely cold ice can also increase tooth sensitivity, and grinding ice can wear away at the enamel over time, creating susceptibility to decay.

Using Teeth as Tools and Nail Biting

  • Teeth are not meant to open containers, bite tags, chew fishing line, bite nails or open packages. Doing so can cause teeth to weaken over time, leading to cracks and chips. Using teeth as tools can also damage prior dental work resulting in added expense and discomfort. Constant nail biting also exposes the mouth to harmful bacteria that lives under the nails, increasing your chance for illness.


  • Smoking not only damages your body, but it also wreaks havoc on your oral health. Smoking causes tooth discoloration, bad breath, and is a huge cause of oral cancer. Over time, smoking can also cause jaw deterioration, inflamed salivary glands and gum disease.

Sipping and Snacking on Sugary Drinks and Foods

  • If you are someone who always is drinking soda or coffee, sucking on hard candy, or snacking throughout the day, you are constantly exposing your teeth to harmful bacteria that leads to tooth decay. Overexposure to sugars is damaging to the teeth. Switching to water and only eating only at meals is a great start to resetting your oral health.

If you are guilty of one of the habits above, try changing your ways for the upcoming year. Your teeth and your wallet will thank you! If you are located in the Baldwinsville and Central New York area and have any questions about harmful habits and how they are affecting your oral health, please contact our office today!