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Healthy Teeth Matter - Surbiton Dental

5 Habits That Could Destroy Your Smile

Post by : Dr Jack Connan BDS GDC No. 277529 | 26 March 2024

Regular oral care is very important and we should do everything in our capacity to ensure we maintain it daily. Day-to-day oral habits do affect our dental hygiene and a slight mistake over time can destroy a smile eventually. Dr Habib, a Surbiton dentist, can help maintain your smile and can give you advice on how you can avoid some bad habits:

Not Flossing

While brushing your teeth twice a day is important, many people don’t realise that flossing at least once a day is just as important as brushing your teeth. It is critical to maintain a healthy smile. What flossing does is remove the cavity-causing bacteria left from food particles that get stuck in your teeth and can cause tooth decay.

Brushing Too Soon After Eating

While we are taught that brushing your teeth straight after eating is a good thing, it might be good to wait for at least 30 minutes and instead rinse your mouth after eating. This is because acidic foods and beverages can erode tooth enamel, so brushing your teeth so soon after eating can essentially brush the acid into the teeth.

Not Replacing Your Toothbrush Often Enough

Dentists advise you to change your toothbrush every 4-6 months, as old toothbrushes lose their effectiveness and can also harbour harmful bacteria that can cause infections. When bristles on an old toothbrush curl outward, it’s time to get a replacement.

Excessively Bleaching Your Teeth

While a lot of us want pearly white teeth and often turn to bleaching the teeth, overuse can cause them to look unnaturally white and increase tooth sensitivity.

Using a Hard-Bristled Toothbrush

Using a hard-bristled toothbrush coupled with a forceful brushing technique causes permanent damage to your gums. So always use a soft toothbrush and gently brush the teeth at a 45-degree angle in a circular motion.

Excessive Consumption of Acidic Foods and Beverages

Acidic foods and drinks, such as citrus fruits, tomatoes, and carbonated beverages, can erode tooth enamel over time, leading to sensitivity and decay. Moderating the intake of such food and rinsing your mouth with water after consuming acidic items can help minimise the negative impact.

Using Teeth as Tools

Opening packages, bottle caps, or using teeth to hold items can lead to chips or fractures. Teeth are designed for eating, not as substitutes for scissors or carrying devices. Resorting to proper tools for these tasks can prevent accidental damage to your teeth.

Tobacco Use

Smoking or using tobacco products can stain teeth, cause gum disease, and increase the risk of oral cancer. Quitting tobacco use is one of the best steps you can take to protect your oral health and ensure the longevity of your smile.


Maintaining a beautiful smile requires more than just aesthetic care; it involves a commitment to good oral health practices and avoiding habits that can cause harm. By staying informed and proactive, you can ensure that your smile remains bright and healthy for years to come. Regular dental check-ups, combined with a conscientious daily oral hygiene routine, are your best defence against the common pitfalls that threaten dental health.

If you want to improve your smile please call us on 0208 399 4311

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