If so, you are not alone but the advice from our Ipswich dentists is to stop! Most of us are putting our oral health at risk by using our teeth as tools for jobs they weren’t intended for.
Joint research by the Oral Health Foundation and Philips, and highlighted by Harbour Dental Care, has found that 65% of us frequently use our teeth for tasks other than eating and drinking.
The most common misuse for our teeth is tearing sticky tape with 41% of us admitting to doing this regularly. More than a quarter of us bite our nails while over a fifth use our teeth to carry things when our hands are full.
Other popular uses include taking tags out of clothing (20%), chewing pens and pencils (16%), opening bottles (9%) and doing up zips (4%).
Dr Nigel Carter OBE, Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation says that while it may seem trivial, using our teeth as tools poses a considerable risk to our oral health.
Dr Carter says: “Anything from opening bottles to chewing foreign objects can damage existing dental work or cause our teeth to crack.
“There are also examples of teeth shifting out of place, chipping, and in some cases breaking, due to the pressure and strain. Accidents are also more likely to happen which could result in invasive and expensive emergency dental work.”
Young adults are the biggest culprits when it comes to using teeth in improper ways with 85% of 18-35-year-olds admitting to abusing their teeth by performing unusual tasks with them. This is significantly higher than 35-54-year-olds (70%) and the over-55s (54%).
If you have cracked or chipped a tooth, please get in touch for some help and advice. Our dentists Malcolm Harbour and Dalia Odeh have a raft of solutions at their fingertips, from dental veneers or crowns, to composite bonding.
Composite bonding can transform the appearance of one or more teeth in a single visit. Tooth-coloured composite resin (like a white filling) straightens uneven or chipped edges, or closes gaps between our teeth. This fast, affordable and impressive treatment requires minimal tooth preparation and is usually completed in less than one hour per tooth often without the need for any anaesthetic.
If you would like to find out more, please contact us.