Everyone wants a strong, healthy smile, but it can be a little too easy to hurt your teeth if you’re not careful. While everyone should know that proper oral hygiene and regular dental visits are crucial to keeping their teeth healthy, many people might not realize that certain popular foods can chip or crack teeth if they are chewed improperly. Here are a few foods that can damage your teeth if you are not careful.
Popcorn has been loved for centuries for its crunchy, poofy texture. It’s the traditional fare at movie theaters and an ingredient in many snack mixes. Unfortunately, making popcorn always leaves behind unpopped kernels, and biting down on them too hard at just the right angle can chip or crack your teeth. Even though you’ll immediately know it if you bite down into one, it can be hard to see them among the many popped pieces.
One way to avoid the unpopped kernels is to give your bowl a thorough shake before you start chowing down. This will cause many of these potential dental disasters to settle closer to the bottom of the bowl. You should also take care to only pick up a few pieces of popcorn at a time rather than shoveling whole handfuls into your mouth. These tips can significantly reduce the chances of you hurting your teeth.
Barbeque is a time-honored tradition and a sure way to please family, friends, and neighbors. The traditional meats include chicken, ribs, T-bones, and chops that make sumptuous meals while being fun to cook. Unfortunately, carelessly biting into a bone can damage your teeth. Even if you remove the bone from the meat, a small piece accidentally left behind can crack or chip your tooth if you bite down on it too hard. It’s important to be careful when chewing these meats so your teeth don’t become injured.
You probably wouldn’t chew on the gravel on the side of the driveway because you know that your teeth are not able to grind up rocks. What many people don’t know is that, when water is frozen, it is considered to be a mineral. While many people like to chew on ice cubes to cool off while rehydrating, chewing on ice is a notorious cause of dental injuries. Even softer ice products like snow cones, shaved ice, and slushies can scratch and wear away the enamel layer.
Over time, chewing on ice will result in hairline cracks in your teeth while making them more and more sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. The best way to prevent this is to avoid chewing ice completely.
Human teeth are incredibly strong, but they should not be used recklessly. By being aware of what you are chewing, you can prevent painful damage to your teeth while keeping them in good shape for life.
About the Author
Dr. Richard Thomas graduated with his Doctor of Dental Surgery from Case Western Reserve University before completing a one-year hospital-based residency program at the Geisinger Medical Center. He currently serves as a member of the American Dental Association, the Ohio Dental Association, and the Toledo Dental Society. His office in Toledo, OH offers general, restorative, cosmetic, and emergency dentistry. To learn more about protecting your teeth from chips and cracks, contact the office online or dial (419) 539-2168.