People begin to bite their nails at a young age in many cases. Like many habits, it can be difficult to stop this behavior, even if you are aware of the problems it could cause for your health. With nail-biting, this habit can hurt the structure of your smile in many ways.
Awareness of the damage that nail biting can create can make it easier to conquer this habit. Read on to learn about three of the oral health risks that biting your nails could contribute to your smile.
How Does Biting Your Nails Harm Your Smile?
Your teeth have a durable outer layer called enamel that ensures the wear and tear of everyday oral functions do not affect your dental health. However, high amounts of pressure on your teeth may cause them to crack, chip, or fracture. Biting your nails is one way to generate this type of pressure that can hurt your teeth.
These injuries detract from the appearance of your smile. But they can also deepen or worsen over time, making them vulnerable to oral infections and other dental problems.
If you sustain breakage of any severity to a tooth, do not hesitate to let your dentist know. They may ask you to come to their office for emergency treatment to restore the structure of the tooth. You can avoid this dental emergency by stopping habits like nail biting that can lead to this concern.
Disrupting Prior Dental Work
If you have had dental work in the past that left fixtures on your smile, nail biting could harm these treatments too. The pressure created from biting hard items like fingernails could cause a filling, crown, or veneer to dislodge or break.
This type of accident is considered a dental emergency. This is because, for many dental treatments, your dentist must remove a minute amount of enamel from your tooth to make room for a fixture on the tooth.
If a crown or other item no longer covers the tooth, then the interior of the tooth will become exposed due to this enamel loss. Prevent requiring replacement or repair to your prior dental work by stopping a nail-biting habit as soon as you can.
Shifting Teeth Out of Alignment
The pressure created on your teeth from nail biting can lead to more damage beyond the structure of your teeth. This behavior can make the teeth shift out of their position if it persists.
You may notice your teeth begin to become crooked, gapped, or overlapped. This can impact the way that your smile looks but it can also make your oral health deteriorate.
You might have trouble accessing the full surface of your teeth if you have a misaligned smile. This means you cannot brush or floss as well as you need to in order to keep plaque from your smile. Lingering plaque and tartar will lead to major dental damage that might become irreversible.
Keep your smile straight and healthy by avoiding biting your nails. If your teeth have become crooked, your dentist can fix minor aesthetic issues with teeth bonding treatment.