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Do you ever find yourself chewing your nails when you’re bored or nervous? If you do, you know what this habit can do to your nails, but do you ever wonder what it does to your teeth? At first, it may not seem like anything happens—after all, your nails break, your teeth don’t—but prolonged biting can have a negative effect on your smile.

For instance, did you know that your fingernails are typically the dirtiest part of your entire body. This means that by chewing your nails you are exposing your smile to germs and bacteria that could actually promote illness and tooth decay. Similarly, if you put too much pressure on one tooth, you could potentially crack a tooth.

To make matters worse, if you frequently chew your fingernails when you’re stressed you could be unintentionally training yourself to chew reflexively when you’re stressed. This can lead to worn down teeth, which can cause jaw problems and headaches.

Fortunately, there are a few things you can try to break the nail biting habit. For instance, keep your nails short or coated with something bitter. Manicures can also help since you’ll be less likely to bite your nails if you have spent money on them. You can also try stress management techniques, such as yoga, meditating, or wearing a rubber band to snap when you want to bite your nails.

If you would like more recommendations or more information, please feel free to contact Foster Dental at 718-673-8060 today. Dr. Anthony Foster and our team are excited to hear from you soon.