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5 Ways You’re
Damaging Your Teeth

 You brush. You floss. You see your dentist regularly. You’ve got your oral health covered, right? Maybe not. You may be damaging your pearly whites with one or more of these five common habits:

1 Chewing ice.

Chewing on hard substances, like ice or hard candies, can damage your enamel and put your teeth at risk for chips and breaks.

2 Citrus overload.

Lemons, limes, oranges, and other citrus fruits are highly acidic and can erode your enamel over time. Some citrus is fine—just don’t overdo it.

3 Smoking or chewing tobacco.

Need another reason to quit? Not only can tobacco products stain your teeth, but they can also cause gum disease, tooth loss, and loss of tissue and bone around the teeth.

4 Sweet drinks.

Sugary drinks, such as soft drinks and sports drinks, can create plaque that eats away at your teeth and causes decay. If you do sip sugary drinks, drink water afterward to rinse your mouth.

5 Drinking alcohol.

Over time, heavy alcohol use can reduce saliva flow, which can lead to tooth decay and infections. Limit how much you drink to reduce your risk.

WHAT’S YOUR DENTAL IQ?

Test yours with this easy quiz. Visit www.mouthhealthy.org/en/dental-iq.