Do you ever find yourself chewing your nails when you’re bored or nervous? If you do, you know what this habit can do to your nails, but do you ever wonder what it does to your teeth? At first, it may not seem like anything happens—after all, your nails break, your teeth don’t—but prolonged biting can have a negative effect on your smile.
For example, would you be surprised to learn that chewing your nails can fracture your teeth? This is likely when too much pressure is placed on a single area. Similarly, since your nails tend to be dirty, chewing could expose your mouth to bacteria that could promote plaque buildup and tooth decay.
To make matters worse, if you frequently chew your fingernails when you’re stressed you could be unintentionally training yourself to chew reflexively when you’re stressed. This can lead to worn down teeth, which can cause jaw problems and headaches.
Fortunately, there are a few things you can try to break the nail biting habit. For instance, keep your nails short or coated with something bitter. Manicures can also help since you’ll be less likely to bite your nails if you have spent money on them. You can also try stress management techniques, such as yoga, meditating, or wearing a rubber band to snap when you want to bite your nails.
If you would like more recommendations or more information, please feel free to contact Children's Crossing at 801.766.4900 today. Dr. Tew, Dr. Rupp, Dr. Jacobsen, and our team are excited to hear from you soon.