Related to bones but hardened by enamel, our teeth are designed to take a certain amount of use. They are responsible for the first step of digestion, which happens inside our mouth when we chew. Teeth are also involved in speaking, and because of their position along the jawbone, connected to the powerful jaw muscle (masseter). For all of their daily obligations, teeth are built to be strong and do their job. However the relative strength of teeth can also be their downfall, so proper use of our teeth is crucial if we want to avoid tooth damage. “Enamel is actually the hardest substance in the body,” says Dr. Sarita Arteaga at the University of Connecticut school of Dental Medicine, “so if you hit it the right way or the wrong way because of physics it can chip or cause fractures.”
As the gatekeepers to our mouth and all of its high-traffic activities, adult human teeth require a measure of care and a corresponding level of consideration to last a lifetime. We all come with just the one set after the baby teeth are shed, so avoiding tooth damage to the one and only will save us great pain and expense later. Here are the 15 top ways you hurt your teeth.
1. Edward Scissorteeth
Using them instead of a pair of scissors or a knife. If the bag of chips doesn’t tear easily, consider getting up to grab a tool rather than tearing into it like a lion. Opening bottles and other heavy mechanical acts can chip or break teeth, leading to permanent tooth damage.
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