Just like you can buy sushi from a gas station, you can also use your teeth as tools. However, neither comes highly recommended. And for good reason. While your dentist in Austin isn’t an expert on local sushi, we are experts on teeth. Our teeth are designed to help us speak and chew, and using them for anything other than their intended purpose can put your smile at increased risk of damage.
Avoid Using Teeth To Open Packages
We’ve all been there — hungry for lunch with a delicious bag of chips waiting for us. We go to open it and it’s just… stuck. We pull and pull but we just can’t get the bag to open. So instead, we grab the bag between our teeth, bite down, and rip. Finally! Crunchy, crispy chips. While this tactic can successfully open packages, it can also cause tooth damage. When you encounter pesky packaging, tough tape, or tricky tags take a few extra minutes to find a pair of scissors and save yourself a potential trip to your dentist in Austin.
Don’t Use Teeth To Help Carry Things
Another common way we tend to use our teeth as tools is to try and have them function as another hand to help us carry or hold things. However, our teeth aren’t meant to grip and hold on to things like nails, pencils, or even your cell phone. Doing so can also increase the risk of breaking or cracking teeth as well as put you at risk for choking.
Keep Things Out of Your Mouth
Anything that’s not food shouldn’t go anywhere near your mouth. This includes things like fingernails, pens, and jewelry. Chewing on non-food items can damage your teeth and your jaw and require treatment from your dentist in Austin. Besides, a lot of these things can contain a lot of germs so the last place you should put them is in your mouth.
Take It Easy On The Nuts
Nuts are a great, nutritious snack that is packed with protein. They’re also pretty convenient and can travel easily. However, nuts have shells, and if you buy unshelled nuts, you’ll have to remove the casing to get to the edible inside. The most common way to do this is to crack the shell between teeth. This can once again lead to chips, cracks, or broken teeth. Other food items that can also damage your teeth in a similar way are popcorn, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds.
Our teeth are incredibly tough and the protective enamel is actually the strongest substance in the human body. However, as with everything, teeth do have their limits to what they can withstand. To help protect your teeth, use them only to chew your food and avoid using them as any sort of tool. And of course, make sure to see your dentist in Austin every six months for preventive dental checkups.