Stay In-the-Know with Our Fairview Heights Dental Office

We believe in creating a relationship with our patients that goes beyond the office doors. We've specifically created this section of our site to share with you important news and informational dental blogs from our Fairview Heights family dental practice.

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Your Fairview Heights Cosmetic Dentists

How to Avoid Snacking
It’s no secret that snacking is an enjoyable and tasty past time. The thought of your favorite snack is something that will get you through the day, just to enjoy your treat at the perfect moment. Whether that treat is something sweet like a cupcake or something sour like a candy, it’s important to consider one thing – your teeth!
 
Every time you enjoy a sugary snack, the natural bacteria in your mouth works to increase the acidity. This acidity attacks and tries to break down the layer of your enamel – the surface of your teeth – that’s protecting the nerves within the dentin. This causes tooth decay, which leads to cavities and increases your risk of dental disease.
 
Whether you snack throughout the day, have a sweet tooth, or prefer sugary drinks like soda, your smile is in danger. Learn more below with the help of our Fairview Heights dentist.
 
Why Good Nutrition for Your Smile is Important
While it’s extremely difficult to have a complete sugar-free diet, it’s important to keep an eye on how much sugar you’re consuming for a number of beneficial reasons. There is natural sugar in many foods we eat, but when it comes to additional sugar from desserts and snacks, your teeth may not be able to handle it. This greatly increases the risk of getting cavities as your teeth break down to the harmful bacteria of sweets and treats.
 
A balanced diet is essential. Not only will your smile be grateful, but your whole body will be, too!
 
The Harm of Snacking
If you snack throughout the way, in between your standard three meals a day, your teeth and gums don’t get a chance to rest and recuperate. The reason that health professionals insist on sticking to three meals a day is for the benefit of your overall health, including dental. If you continue to eat in between your major meals, your mouth doesn’t have time to create saliva to help fight back against the harmful bacteria of foods or help rebuild and strengthen your enamel. Instead, you’re allowing bacteria to continuously break down your enamel and weakening your teeth in the process. The time in between meals is valuable for your smile and should be cherished. During this time, drink some water instead to further increase the speed with which your saliva is protecting your smile. By the time your next meal comes around, your teeth will be prepared.
 
What are Ways to Stop Snacking?
To cut back or stop your snacking habits, check out some helpful tips below:
Meal Prep or Plan Ahead: Having your meals planned out will give you a better idea of what you’ll be eating, and how much you’ll be eating, too. Without the structure, you may be tempted to graze and snack throughout the day.
Don’t Forget Breakfast: There are numerous reasons why breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day. If you skip breakfast, but are hungry before lunchtime, you’re likely to snack on small things to be held over until your next meal. Having a balanced breakfast eliminates that possibility.
Hydrate with Water: Instead of that extra cup of coffee, or looking for a boost with an energy drink, enjoy some water. Diuretics will only make you thirstier and dry out your mouth, harming your teeth even further. A cool glass of water will make you feel better in all the ways you’re looking for!
 
Don’t hesitate to ask our Fairview Heights dentist for other helpful tips on ways to limit or avoid snacking for the benefit of your smile. Give our office a call at (618) 622-1800 for further questions, concerns, or to schedule an appointment today!
 
Tips for Better Oral Hygiene
After you’ve visited our office for your routine dental cleaning and exams, your dental care doesn’t stop here! When you go home with your brand new toothbrush, it’s time to examine your daily routine to see what ways to improve your smile. See what our Fairview Heights dentist has to share so you can keep a healthy and beautiful smile at all times.
 
Make Sure You’re Brushing Your Teeth the Right Way
Yes, brushing your teeth every morning is a necessary step to maintain healthy teeth and gums, but are you doing it right? People mistakenly think that there is no “wrong way” to brush your teeth, but without the proper technique, your smile may suffer. It’s important to reach all the right spots and brush for at least two minutes. Some people underestimate the length of two minutes when brushing your teeth, but we promise, your healthy smile with be worth it!
 
When you’re brushing, remember that you’re not only cleaning your teeth, but your gums and tongue, too. These areas are just are sensitive and need to be properly protected. Bacteria is able to hide and build up in the smallest places, so your technique is key to reach all these areas to continuously improve your oral hygiene. Without cleaning these places, you’re susceptible to gingivitis and advanced gum disease.
 
There is also a common misconception that the faster you brush your teeth, the cleaner they’re going to be, but this isn’t true! If you rush through your brush, you’re not giving your teeth the proper cleaning they deserve. It’s also important to note that if you’re aggressively brushing, you’re not doing your smile any favors. Brushing too hard will wear down your enamel, the protective surface of your teeth, and cause dental sensitivity. With a weak enamel, you may experience sharp, stinging pains when you have food or drinks with drastic temperatures.
 
Flossing Must be Done
When we bring up flossing during your appointments, we do it out of love and care for your smile! Flossing is an essential part of your oral hygiene routine, so be sure to do so at least once a day to improve your smile. While the bristles of your toothbrush are made to clean some of those hard-to-reach places, your floss is guaranteed to get those spots and remove the build up food particles and bacteria and protect your smile from cavities.
 
Avoid Harmful Foods and Drinks
The first step to good oral hygiene is ensuring your smile is being properly taken care of with the right tools, like your toothbrush and floss. In between these routine steps, it’s important that your diet isn’t counteracting the hard work you’ve done! There are numerous acidic and dangerous foods and drinks that break down your smile much faster than other. Try to avoid intake of things like coffee, sweets, tomato-based products, and the like.
 
Looking for more helpful tips to improve your smile? Look no further than our Fairview Heights dentist. Give our office a call at (618) 622-1800 to schedule your consultation or appointment with our team. We’ll get your smile on the right track!
 
Flossing 101: Tips from the Pros
One of the most common questions patients get when they visit our office for a cleaning is, “Have you been flossing?” This is because it’s one of the most important steps in your daily dental routine and should not be skipped! We understand that this task can be uncomfortable and tedious, but you deserve the healthiest smile and that can only be accomplished with this necessary step.
 
What Does Flossing Do for Your Smile?
When you floss, you’re reaching all the spots that your toothbrush bristles simply can’t get to, like the spaces between your teeth. With the help of floss, you’re removing the build up of plaque and bacteria that’s harming both your teeth and gums. If these are left behind, you’re vulnerable to cavities, dental decay, and even gum disease. If there is decay between the teeth, multiple fillings may be necessary, or other cosmetic restorations to improve your smile, depending on how much damage is done.
 
The lingering bacteria from foods, drinks, and lack of proper care negatively affects your gums, as well. They’re start swelling and bleeding, making them prone to infection and further pain. Once gum disease occurs, the structure of your smile is at risk. Your teeth will become loose and start shifting and eventually, they’ll fall out. The foundation of your jawbone becomes compromised due to gum disease and it can no longer support the roots of your teeth.
 
When Should You Floss?
If you floss on a regular basis – at least once a day – your teeth and gums will stay healthy, you’ll prevent cavities, and prevent infections and gum disease from occurring.
 
Try flossing before you brush your teeth at the end of your day to loosen any lingering food particles. It doesn’t hurt to floss once more after you’ve brushed, just to ensure you’ve gotten everything.
 
If you have a hard time remembering to floss, try putting it in an area near your toothbrush so it’s visible and easy to spot, instead of in a cabinet or hidden somewhere else. The sooner you integrate this simple step in your daily dental routine, the healthier your smile will be.
 
How Should You Floss?
One of the most popular statements we hear about flossing is that it’s difficult. Patients find it tough to reach all the spots in between their teeth with the typical floss spools we associate with the task. With traditional floss, we recommend breaking off about 18 inches of string and wind up most of the floss while only leaving a few free inches of space. Using your thumb and pointer finger to hold the floss taut, glide the floss between your teeth and dislodge any visible or invisible bacteria. Be sure to be gentle as you floss since aggressive flossing will only cause sensitive and bleeding gums.
 
If you’re not a fan of the traditional floss, there are other options available to you, including threader floss and water flossers. Don’t hesitate to ask us about the best choice for you, as well as a demonstration on how to properly floss if you’re still not comfortable with the task yourself.
 
We want to encourage top oral hygiene in every way possible, so please ask any questions, comments, or concerns you have about taking care of your smile at home or on the go. Give our Fairview Heights dentist a call at (618) 622-1800 and our staff will happily assist you. We can’t wait to work together with you towards a healthier, happier and stronger smile.
 
Summer Foods for Healthy Teeth
Summer is right around the corner! We’re getting warmed up, so it’s time to have some of your favorite foods and drinks. In between, make sure that your snacks and indulgences are safe for your smile. Below, our Fairview Heights dentist shares summertime foods that are tasty, full of flavor, and healthy for your teeth and gums.
 
Fruits
The summer brings some of the most refreshing, delicious fruits, many of which are beneficial for your smile. Don’t forget – while these fruits are nutritious in many ways, they are also acidic and have the ability to break down your enamel if you’re eating them too much and too often. When you’re enjoying these fruits, pair them with minimal-acidic foods like almonds and wash them down with a glass of water.
 
While apples are commonly picked in the fall, there are variations that grow in the summer. Apples increase saliva production, which wash away bacteria and food particles built up between your teeth and other hard-to-reach places. The harder texture of the apples also enhances your gums, as well.
 
Other great fruits to enjoy are strawberries and peaches. Strawberries are high in vitamin C, which minimize inflammation and produce a protein that combats periodontal (gum) disease. Peaches naturally contain fluoride, which enables the remineralization and reconstruction of enamel while also strengthening your existing enamel. They are also filled with vitamin C and calcium to strengthen your teeth.
 
Cheese
Seasonal cheeses, much like vegetables and fruits, have beneficial ingredients for your smile. Choices like feta cheese, goat cheese, ricotta, and mozzarella contain calcium and protein that reinforce your teeth and bones. They also stimulate the production of saliva, which assists in cleaning the bacteria and food particle build-up in your mouth.
 
Meats and Fish
Grilling is a favorite pastime in the summer, so be sure to include some of the healthier options for your smile! Lean meats like turkey and chicken and fatty fishes are rich in protein and contain phosphorus, which assist in fortifying your jaw and teeth. Combine that with delicious sides like leafy greens (compromised with vitamin A that produces enamel) and even a side of beans, which are high in fiber, and you’ve got a smile-friendly meal!
 
Looking for other summertime foods that will strengthen your smile? Simply give our Fairview Heights dentist a call at (618) 622-1800 and we’ll happily help!
 
Smile Transformation Options
When you’re looking to transform your smile, there’s no better place to go to than our office. Our Fairview Heights dentist provides numerous cosmetic services that give you the new look you’ve been dreaming of, no matter how big or small. While many people think of a complete smile makeover when they think of cosmetic dentistry, there are small, yet notable changes that we’re capable of creating to drastically improve the way you feel about your smile. Dive deeper with us below!
 
Inlays and Onlays
Also known as indirect fillings, this cosmetic service is used when a tooth has mild to moderate decay and there isn’t enough of a tooth structure to support a filling. While this is also seen as a restorative procedure, applying these inlays and onlays restore the shape of your teeth and gives you confidence to laugh out loud without fear of showing any damaged teeth.
 
Composite Bonding
With the help of cosmetic bonding, we repair decayed, damaged, or discolored teeth utilizing a helpful material that closely resembles your enamel. It gives your restored smile a natural look, boosting your self-esteem and strengthening your teeth. We remove the tooth decay and apply the composite material onto the surface of your tooth, sculpting into the right place to mimic the size and shape of your surrounding teeth.
 
Dental Veneers
As one of the most popular cosmetic services around the world, dental veneers completely transform the way your smile looks with no actual surgery involved. Each veneer that is placed on the surface of your natural tooth is created for your smile and your smile only. Your smile is unique and will always be treated as such with our team.
 
Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening is another extremely popular cosmetic service, so much so that you can buy teeth whitening kits at the store. There are numerous brands of teeth whitening to buy online or over-the-counter, beginning your journey towards a brighter smile in the comfort of your own home.
 
If you find that the store products aren’t giving you the smile you were hoping for, we have the solution. All the box whitening products only have one setting of whitening your smile, which may not work as well for you as it does someone else. Thankfully, our whitening service is personally created for your smile and your smile only! Everyone’s smile is unique, which means they should be treated as such.
 
Dental Implants
This is the biggest smile makeover procedure around, giving patients a completely new smile for them to share with friends and family, even themselves in the mirror! If you’ve experienced tooth loss, there is still a way for your smile to recover. We surgically insert a small titanium screw into the jaw at the site of your missing tooth, which acts as the tooth to hold the custom-created crown in place.
 
Your implants look, act, and feel just like your natural teeth. They’re also cared for in the same way! Be sure to brush and floss your teeth twice a day, every day, to ensure the strength of your implants. You’ll visit our Fairview Heights dentist for checkups and routine maintenance, but your confidence will be through the roof with this incredibly new smile.
 
If you’re considering one of these cosmetic services, call our office today at (618) 622-1800! Your smile deserves to be the best it possibly can be and we’re here to make that happen. Contact our team and we’ll assist in picking the best date and time for your consultation. 
 
Keep Your Teeth Healthy at Home
A well-structured routine helps you get through your day faster and more efficiently. It’s beneficial your well-being, which includes your smile! Our Fairview Heights family dentist provides helpful ways to keep your teeth and gums healthy in between your bi-annual visits below. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! Our goal is to keep your smile strong.
 
Don’t Go to Bed Without Brushing Your Teeth
To keep your teeth bright and healthy, it’s important to brush them twice a day, every day. Ideally, you’re brushing your teeth every morning and every night. While it’s easy to remember to brush in the morning, you may be exhausted at night and just want to fall right into bed. That’s where routine comes in! Create a nighttime routine, which includes brushing your teeth, to ensure you’re protecting your smile. Be sure to include flossing in this routine, too.
 
Without brushing your teeth at night, you’re allowing the bacteria and food particles built up from the day continue to linger and cause harm to your oral health even longer as you sleep. If you don’t remove or get rid of these harmful bacteria, you’re at a higher risk for cavities, dental decay, and other dental issues.
 
Be Sure You’re Brushing Properly
As you remember to brush twice a day, every day, it’s also important to recall the right way to brush your teeth. Dental professionals like our Fairview Heights family dentist say to brush for at least two minutes. This allows you to reach every area of your mouth, even the tough-to-reach places. Spend 30 seconds brushing each “quadrant” of your mouth to ensure a proper cleaning.
 
When you’re brushing your teeth, be gentle. Brushing your teeth faster and harder won’t guarantee a better cleaning – in fact, it’s the opposite! If you brush too hard, you’re weakening your enamel (the surface of your teeth) and risking your nerves to exposure and sensitivity. If you don’t brush for the recommended two minutes, you’re not giving your teeth the proper cleaning they deserve, allowing the harmful bacteria to continue damaging your mouth.
 
Use the Right Toothpaste
It’s certainly overwhelming to stand in the store and stare at the wall of toothpastes! How do you know what’s best? How do you know what your smile needs? Thankfully, that’s why we’re here. During your next appointment at our practice, be sure to ask us what toothpaste is best for your smile. We’ll even give you a sample!
 
Fluoride is one of the most beneficial ingredients in toothpastes to clean your teeth. This is a leading defense in tooth decay; not only does it fight back against bacteria, but it strengthens your enamel and creates a protective barrier on the surface of your teeth to make it even harder for bacteria to get in.
 
Don’t be Afraid to Floss
Flossing, although one of the most important steps in your dental routine, is also one of the most neglected. Flossing guarantees you’re reaching the spots that your toothbrush can’t clean, and without this task, you’re at a higher risk for cavities and dental decay. When you floss, you’re stimulating the gums, reducing plaque build-up, and lowering inflammation in those tiny spots.
 
If you’ve brushed your teeth and seen some red, flossing is even more of a necessity. Your gums are extremely vulnerable at this point and you’re at a higher risk for gum disease. While flossing is seen as difficult, there are numerous ways to ensure these areas between your teeth are getting cleaned. Ask us about the best tools that will work for your individual smile.
 
Have any other questions about improving your dental routine at home? Our Fairview Heights family dentist is here to help! Call our office at (618) 622-1800 and we’ll answer any questions you have, as well as schedule your next appointment for your dental cleaning.
 
Maintain Dental Care Routine at Home
During the six months in between your routine dental appointments, we want to ensure you’re taking care of your teeth and gums to the best of your ability. We know how important your smile is in relation to your appearance and confidence, which is why we want you to thrive in every way possible when you’re not visiting our office. With these helpful tips from our dentist in Fairview Heights, your smile will shine all day, every day, and stay healthy, too!
 
Brushing Your Teeth
When you brush your teeth, remember to brush for at least two minutes. This gives you time to reach all areas of your mouth and provide a thorough cleaning. We recommend brushing each quadrant of your mouth for 30 seconds, which tackles a great cleaning and hits the two-minute mark.
 
When you’re brushing your teeth every morning and night, hold your toothbrush at an angle – about 45 degrees – where the bristles are pointed towards your gums. With this technique, you’re able to get those food particles and bacterial build-up that want to linger on or in between your teeth.
 
As you’re brushing, move your toothbrush in a circular motion instead of brushing back and forth. With this technique, you’re reaching all the surfaces of your teeth while also jostling and loosening up those stubborn food pieces. Of course, don’t forget to brush your teeth twice a day, every day!
 
Flossing Your Teeth
We recommend flossing your teeth at least once a day. This includes flossing in between every tooth, including the ones in the back. We understand that they’re a bit harder to reach, but don’t hesitate to ask our TOWN dentist for helpful tips or tools to use so you can cover each area.
 
As you’re flossing, follow the curve of your teeth to avoid damaging your gums. If you used an aggressive up-and-down motion, you’re likely to add too much pressure, which may cause bleeding. You’ll want to cover as much space as you can reach with your floss, so we encourage you to check out instructional videos provided by the American Dental Association and other reputable organizations to take care of your smile.
 
Additional Oral Hygiene Tips
While mouthwash isn’t for everyone, it’s still an effective tool to cleanse your mouth. There are different available types of mouthwash, ranging from cosmetic to therapeutic. Overusing mouthwash can weaken the surface of your teeth (commonly known as the enamel) and give bacteria access to the nerves of your gums and teeth. Ask us about the best mouthwash for your oral health.
 
As you’re cleaning your tongue, put a small amount of toothpaste on your toothbrush and continue the circular motions like you would on your teeth. There are also tongue scrapers available, where you’ll gently drag the curved area to clean the surface. If you’re interested in learning more about available tongue scrapers, don’t hesitate to ask.
 
Of course, a healthy balanced diet is an important factor to a healthy smile. There are fruits and vegetables that are both good for your overall health and your dental health. Celery, carrots, apples and strawberries are all great foods to include in your diet for a stronger smile!
 
When you’re visiting our dentist in Fairview Heights for your routine dental appointment, be sure to schedule your next appointment while you’re there – you won’t have to worry about it in the future and we’ll contact you for a reminder once your next visit approaches. Call our office at (618) 622-1800 and we’ll assist in any questions or concerns you may have about your daily dental routine.
 
Celebrate Children's Dental Health Month!
February often comes with handmade valentines, chocolate, candy, and flowers, but did you know it should also come with a dental checkup? February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. That means it is the perfect time to bring your kids in for their annual dental cleaning and checkup to make sure their smile is healthy and happy! Your Fairview Heights dentist is dedicated to helping children throughout the community have beautiful and healthy smiles. Call our office today to schedule your child’s next visit! 
 
Schedule Their Next Visit
Call your Fairview Heights dentist today to schedule your child’s next dental cleaning. No matter how good of a job your child does taking care of their teeth, no smile is complete without a professional dental cleaning. Brushing and flossing daily is essential, but it is not enough to combat plaque and tartar, at least not completely. Brushing twice per day and flossing at night can help prevent the buildup of plaque, but it can’t remove tartar. Tartar is created on the surface of your teeth when plaque hardens onto the surface. If not removed, tartar can cause cavities and bacterial infections. Your child needs to visit their Fairview Heights dentist every six months to have this tartar scaled off of their teeth so that their smile can stay healthy.
 
Get Them New Dental Tools
An easy way to encourage a healthy smile is to get your child some new tools to help care for their smile! A new toothbrush or toothpaste can be an excellent motivator when it comes to dental hygiene. A toothbrush should be replaced every 3 to 4 months for it to remain effective. Children’s toothbrushes come in a variety of colors and sometimes even have characters from their favorite shows! Bring your child to the store to help them choose a toothbrush they can be excited about using! This can help motivate them to brush more often and for longer periods of time. 
 
Bond Through Dental Care Activities
One way to help improve your child’s smile is to make their dental care routine more fun! There are several ways to help your child enjoy the process of caring for their teeth. Some ideas include playing music, a rewards calendar with small prizes, or even just making tooth brushing time a bonding activity. One of the best ways to model good brushing technique is to brush your teeth with them. Your Fairview Heights dentist may also have activity sheets for your child to complete that can encourage good brushing habits. Ask your Fairview Heights dentist if they have any recommendations for making your child’s dental hygiene routine more fun!
 
Show Them The Plaque
One way you can teach your child about the dangers of plaque is by having them try a plaque-disclosing tablet. This is a simple and safe way to highlight the plaque on your child’s teeth. This tablet can help your child see where they may be missing when they brush and floss. 
 
New Year, New Smile! This Year’s Smile Goals
The start of a new year is the perfect time to commit to some new goals. This year, start to consider some dental health resolutions to add to your self-care routine. Whether it’s flossing daily or even whitening your smile, take this opportunity to examine your own dental health. Check out these suggestions below to get some ideas on how you can improve your oral health this year.
 
Consistent Dental Care is Key
When determining your dental health goals, let’s start with the basics: brushing and flossing. While this may seem like common sense, you should be consistently caring for your smile daily. Sometimes it may be easier to just go to bed without brushing your teeth, or to skip flossing if you feel like you don’t need it, but don’t underestimate the power of plaque! The difference between a healthy smile and a smile with gum disease is consistency. It’s recommended that you brush your teeth twice per day with fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristled toothbrush. 
 
Floss once per day before you go to bed to remove any food debris and bacteria from between your teeth. Plaque is always hiding in your smile, even if you don’t feel it. If plaque sits in place, it hardens and becomes tartar. Over time, tartar can be extremely damaging to your teeth and gums. Be consistent with your dental care to ensure that you have a healthy smile!
 
Choose the Right Snacks
Choose healthy foods and drinks to protect your smile from damage. Anything that is too acidic or contains too much sugar can break down your enamel. Weakening of the enamel can lead to cavities and dental disease, so it’s best to avoid harmful foods altogether. Instead, try chewing on some crunchy vegetables like carrots or cucumbers. These types of foods can help keep your teeth and gums clean and may wash away some plaque in between brushing. Of course, eating vegetables is helpful for your dental health, but it is no replacement for actual dental care. Still brush regularly and visit your dentist every six months. 
 
Visit the Dentist Regularly
You should be visiting our office every six months for a professional dental cleaning and checkup. If you can’t remember the last time you visited, give us a call! No matter how well you care for your smile, you can’t remove tartar without the help of a dental health professional. Tartar must be removed through the process of scaling; which your dental hygienist does every time you visit them for a cleaning. Every smile is unique, so it’s important to understand the needs of your teeth and gums.
 
While gum disease is often common in people with poor oral hygiene, it can still occur due to genetics or even due to medications or pregnancy. While you’re here, ask us for some tips on how to care for your individual smile.
 
Improve Your Smile
If you’ve always been self-conscious of your smile for any reason, it’s possible that one of your goals could be to correct this issue! Whether you have crooked teeth, discoloration, or even gaps in your smile, we can guide you on treatments that can give you the smile of your dreams! Don’t keep pushing off your smile goals until next year, tackle your insecurities head on. Ask our team how we can help you improve the appearance of your smile. Whether you need braces or teeth whitening, the smile you’ve always wanted is within reach!
 
 
Dental Habits to Break in the New Year
As the year comes to an end, resolutions are on the front of everyone’s mind and what they can do to make personal improvements in 2020. Resolutions can range from exercise to diet to therapy, all of which have their own benefits for every individual. When you’re looking to make improvements to your overall health, don’t forget about your smile. Below, our Fairview Heights dentist dives into dangerous and harmful habits we encourage you to break to get your dental health back on track.
 
Nail Biting
A common nervous habit, people bite their nails when they’re anxious or dealing with something stressful. If you continue to bite your nails, you could easily chip a tooth or have a negative impact on your jaw. Don’t hesitate to ask us what some tips are to avoid biting your nails, like fidgeting toys or types of nail polishes.
 
Brushing Your Teeth Too Hard
When you brush your teeth, remember to be gentle with your smile. Brushing aggressively doesn’t mean you’re getting a more efficient cleaning. In fact, you’re causing more damage to your smile than you realize! Instead of efficiently cleaning the surface of your teeth, you’re damaging the enamel. As it weakens, you’ll deal with dental sensitivity when drinking and enjoying hot and cold foods and drinks. Find a new toothbrush with soft bristles and, instead of “scrubbing” your teeth, “massage” them in gentle circles with the bristles to reach every area while providing a proper cleaning.
 
Grinding Your Teeth and Clenching Your Jaw
This stress-induced habit can easily crack and chip your teeth, as well as cause a lot of tension and discomfort in your jaw. It’s important to realize when it’s happening, since this action is seen as unconscious, and to react immediately to relax your jaw. Don’t be afraid to ask us about relaxation exercises, as well.
 
Constant Snacking
A common habit, due to either nerves or just to kill time, is snacking. There are countless delicious snacks available and we understand how hard it is to avoid them! But if you’re constantly putting your teeth to work, especially with harmful snacks like chips, candies, and cookies, your smile will quickly weaken. You’re at a higher risk for cavities and decay, so be sure to seriously cut back on the snacking and try to eat more balanced meals to keep you fuller for longer.
 
Do you have any other harmful dental habits you’re looking to break in 2020? Give our Fairview Heights dentist a call at (618) 622-1800 and we’ll happily set you up for a bright and shiny new year!
 
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