While biting or chewing on nails is an incredibly common habit for both children and adults, many people don’t realize the potentially-damaging effects it can have on their teeth. To help increase awareness about this dangerous habit, we have compiled information about some of the most common problems associated with nail-biting and chewing.
Cracked, chipped or worn down front teeth
While nails might seem soft and pliable, the wear that they can inflict on teeth is substantial. This additional and frequent strain can cause teeth to wear prematurely, and cracked or chipped teeth become much more common for nail-biters.
Bruxism is unintentional grinding of the teeth. Common side effects are facial pain, headaches, recessed gums, and tooth loss.
Can cause TMJ
Regularly biting nails has been linked to an increased risk of TMJ. Placing additional stress on the temporomandibular joint can cause disk displacement and significant issues and pain in the jaw.
Weakening of the roots of the teeth
According tot he Academy of General Dentistry, nail biting puts you at an increased risk of root resorption, and is increased even further for children and adults who wear braces.
Diastama: a gap between the two front teeth
Particularly prevalent in young children who develop a nail-biting habit, diastama is a condition where the gap between the front teeth is increased.
If you or your child has a habit of biting their nails, talk to your dental professional. Common solutions include wearing a mouth guard, as well as therapy to change habits. If you are experiencing problems as a result of a nail-biting habit, contact Dr. Martin and Dr. Appelblatt today to schedule a consultation and address your oral health issues before they worsen.