Is it really that bad to chew ice? – National

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Ice is nice for a lot of issues. It helps heal accidents, it retains drinks cool on scorching summer season days, and it’s even identified to do wonders to your pores and skin.

However chewing it? It seems that snacking on ice cubes is actually unhealthy to your enamel.

“Unequivocally, I can say that chewing ice just isn’t a good suggestion,” stated Dr. David Stevenson, a dentist and president of the Ontario Dental Affiliation. “The primary cause is it’s simply so arduous.”

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Stevenson, who has labored as a dentist for 32 years, stated that he typically sees individuals who have damaged off items of their enamel due to their penchant for ice. This may occur with fillings, crowns, veneers or pure enamel, he stated.

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“I can have a affected person who comes into the workplace and says, ‘I used to be chewing ice cubes and I broke my tooth,’” he instructed International Information.

“Typically, you possibly can have one other affected person who comes within the workplace and says, ‘My tooth broke and I used to be simply consuming tender meals.’ Then you definitely ask additional questions and if they’ve a behavior of chewing ice, and ceaselessly, the reply is sure.”

Chewing ice does hurt long-term

Whereas chewing ice places you in danger for breaking a tooth on the spot, it will possibly additionally creates small cracks in your enamel. These little cracks worsen over time, Stevenson defined, which may result in extra severe issues down the street.

“That crack is rather like the crack within the windshield of a automotive: over time, it form of stretches and will get worse. Then lastly, you could be consuming one thing tender and sticky, and that’s when the piece [of tooth] breaks off,” he stated.

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Even for those who assume you’re within the clear, chewing ice may cause injury that you just won’t spot. Not like a cavity that causes ache, ice-related cracks can go unnoticed in sufferers.

“Typically, you don’t know you’re doing the injury as a result of the cracks are simply little, refined marks at first, they usually’re simply on the floor,” Stevenson stated. “However over time, these cracks get greater and greater.”

What do you have to chew as a substitute of ice?

Like with any behavior, breaking away from ice chewing takes effort and time. However you shouldn’t wean your self off ice, Stevenson stated — you want to go chilly turkey.

“In case you’re making an attempt to interrupt the behavior of chewing ice, I don’t advocate you place the ice dice in your mouth however not chew it,” Stevenson stated. “Don’t even give your self that temptation.”

As a substitute, Stevenson suggests changing ice with one thing else that gained’t do hurt to your enamel. Onerous candies are a no-no, however sugar-free gum is an effective different.

“When you may have that behavior, get a bit piece of sugarless chewing gum and chew that,” he stated.

It won’t provide you with that crunch, however for those who’re craving one thing cool, a mint-flavoured gum is the subsequent finest — and most secure — factor.

Observe @lolahensley

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