Does Fingernail Biting Impact Your Teeth?
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Fingernail biting is a bad habit that is hard for some people to get rid of. It often begins in childhood and may continue on through teenage and adult years. People bite their fingernails for a variety of reasons. These include stress, anxiety, nervousness, frustration, or even boredom.
Interestingly enough, women are more likely to have and keep this quirk. It doesn’t seem to be very harmful, but there are actually a few ways that it can cause damage to your teeth.
Your teeth are tools that are meant to help break down and chew food, making it easier to eat. They are not, however, a way to open things up or meant to chew on hard surfaces such as pens, pencils, and even your nails.
Damage it Causes
Biting your nails doesn’t just change the shape of your teeth; it can also cause other problems such as cracks, chips, or even shift your teeth around. It can also increase your chances of developing bruxism (unintentional grinding) that can lead to facial pain, toothaches, headaches, sensitivity, gum recession, or tooth loss.
Another problem that can occur as a result of nail biting could be unintentional poking of the gums by sharp pieces of your nails while you are biting down on them. This can cause not only swelling and pain to your gums, it can lead to bleeding as well. Your gums are sensitive and should be taken care of properly.
It may sound gross but biting your fingernails exposes your mouth to a wide variety of bacteria. Bacteria become trapped underneath your fingernails and as soon as they make contact with your mouth they are transferred over.
The dental practice of Dr. Badwalz,is located at 3178 Collins Drive in Merced. He has been active in the Merced community since 2009. Make sure to visit Pearl Family Dentistry at DrBadwalz.com or you can also find us on Facebook if you’d like to join in on the conversation there. Call us today 209-383-6133 to make an appointment for your six-month check-up or to finish your treatment.