Need a Resolution? Kick these 5 Bad Habits that Hurt Your Teeth!

Did you remember to brush your teeth when you went to bed after ringing in the New Year at midnight? Your team at Falmouth Dental Arts hopes you did, and we wish our family of patients a year filled with healthy mouths. Are you still looking for a 2020 resolution, but feel like adding a whole new good habit is a little too ambitious? Why not try quitting a bad habit instead? 

We’ve compiled a list of 5 Bad Habits that hurt your teeth. Quit one–kick them all!–and look forward to your best dental year yet! 

1. Biting your nails: We’ve all done it once or twice, but when biting your nails becomes a habit, it has bad side effects for your nails and your entire mouth. Biting your nails can chip your teeth and ultimately impact your jaw. Continually protruding your jaw and biting with pressure gradually changes the natural alignment of your bite, resulting in jaw dysfunction.

Kick It! Try painting a bitter-tasting polish (available in clear varieties as well, for those who would prefer a more subtle tone) on your nails.

2. Brushing too hard/Overbrushing: We all know that brushing your teeth for two minutes, twice a day, is a terrific tooth habit! However, brushing with a stiff-bristled brush, applying a lot of force, or brushing for longer than two minutes can all hurt your teeth and gums. Overbrushing in any form can damage your tooth enamel and erode your gums.

Kick It!  Look for a soft-bristled brush with the ADA Seal of Approval, and be sure to use a gentle hand when brushing. Don’t think of “scrubbing” your teeth–think of “massaging” them. So much nicer!


3. Grinding your teeth/Clenching your jaw: Life can be stressful. Sometimes that stress makes us slouch at our desk or hunch our shoulders, but sometimes stress seeps into our dental posture as well. Grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw can cause cracking or chipping of your teeth, not to mention muscle and joint pain from sustained pressure. 

Kick it! Try some relaxation techniques throughout the day, especially before bed. Grinding your teeth when you’re sleeping is the most difficult to address because you’re unconscious! If you are particularly prone to grinding your teeth in your sleep, you may need to invest in a mouth guard to wear while you sleep. 

4. Using your teeth as tools: Just like biting your nails, we’ve all attempted to use our teeth as scissors or an extra hand. However, your teeth are made for eating and for smiling–not for opening bottles or removing tags. When you use your teeth as tools, you run the risk of cracking or chipping your teeth, puncturing your gums, or even choking.

Kick it! Go get a pair of scissors, find your bottle opener, and make two trips! It may seem like more work at first, but your teeth will be happier. 

5. Chewing ice: This one may seem a little specific, but consider this: your tooth enamel is a type of crystal, as is ice. When you push two crystals against each other, one eventually breaks. In this particular scenario, it is typically the ice which cracks and crumbles–but that’s not a guarantee! Sometimes, teeth or dental appliances break first, leading to a costly visit to the dentist.

Kick it! Use a straw to sip icy beverages, or remove the ice before you start drinking.

Here at Falmouth Dental Arts, we are committed to providing top-notch tooth love for our patients in the office. However, we want to support you and your teeth at all times! If you have any questions about these bad habits, or want some more ideas on how to build good dental habits, please ask at your next appointment. To schedule your appointment, please call our office at 207.781.5900.         

Happy New Year!

happy new yearIt wouldn’t be January without New Year’s Resolutions.

It is said that the concept of a New Year’s Resolution dates all the way back to the Babylonians. The custom originated as a gesture involving “moral favors” which were essentially personal promises to be good to others – the purpose was mostly to please God. It eventually evolved into dedicating time to reflect upon the previous year, and to contemplate the year to come. The goal, once again, was to make better use of personal talents to please God, treat people well, and to avoid habitual sins in the future.

Pretty cool stuff, and it seems pretty similar to the New Year’s Resolutions that we make today. We resolve each year to better ourselves in at least one important aspect of life – physical health, mental health, spiritual health, personal finance, family life etc. But if these resolutions are so important, then why do so many people seemingly fail?

It is believed that one of the main reasons is because we are too secretive. We don’t tell others what our resolutions are, and instead we bottle it up and keep it to ourselves. Now, some resolutions can certainly be personal and you might want to keep them to yourself. However, if you share your New Year’s Resolution and make it well known to family and friends, then you are much more likely to stick with it because they will help hold you accountable.

That is where we come in! In 2014 you should make your smile a priority. Whether it is committing to coming in religiously for all of your scheduled regular cleanings, or getting those veneers or that invisilign that you have always wanted to finish off that perfect smile…2014 is your year and we are here to help you every step of the way. Light up a room this year with your brilliant smile.

Call our office to set up an appointment today!




2013 was a Year to Remember

As we brought in the New Year a few weeks ago, we allowed ourselves a little time to reflect on all happened in 2013. Here are some of the reasons why 2013 was amazing at Falmouth Dental Arts.

  1. Dancing with the Dentists – one of our dreams was to sponsor an event that brought the local dental community together to raise money for charity. In the late summer/early fall of the year 2012, an idea of “Dancing with the Dentists” was born and just over a year later on November 16, 2013, the dream became a reality. The overwhelming support we got from so many people was truly amazing and humbling, and bringing together over 400 of our peers from the Maine dental community for a night of fun outside of our offices made for a magical and unforgettable time. In all, the event raised more than $25,000 to be donated to Maine Dental Lifeline. Dancing with the Dentists exceeded all expectations for its inaugural season and was certainly one of the highlights of our year, thank you to all who attended and supported the cause. And plus, our very own Dr. Brian Brunacini and his wife Dr. Jenny Fultz-Brunacini took home the trophy as the dancing champs of the night!
  2. Celebrating 275 years of combined staff experience – In 2013 our staff celebrated 275 years of combined dental experience between all of us! We take a lot of pride in our commitment to continuing education and constantly absorbing new knowledge so that we are positively providing you with the best dental experience we possibly can with all the cutting edge techniques and technology. Giving you the highest quality care possible and making sure you are more comfortable than you have ever been at a dentists’ office is something we pride ourselves on. We attended a few notable classes and workshops in 2013. One focused on dealing with gluten intolerance/sensitivity and celiac disease, and another course we took focused on the diagnosis of periodontal disease. Both were extremely beneficial.
  3. Our Facebook Page grew to 220 likes – We started the year in January 2013 with 75 “Likes” on our Facebook page and by New Years Eve 2013 we had grown to 220 “Likes.” This may not seem like a big deal, but it means a lot to us. We love keeping in touch with our patients and building relationships with you! This is another tool that allows us to do that when you can’t come in to visit us. We love engaging with you on social media and we are very active on our page, so if you haven’t had the chance to “Like” the FDA Facebook page yet, head over and do it now! We like to have some fun too…we promise it’s not all posts about teeth – check out our page to see for yourself!

The year 2013 had some incredible highs for FDA and we are very grateful. The greatest thing about our job, however, is getting to see you when you come in to visit us, whether it be for a regular cleaning or for more extensive dental work. Coming into our office every day and working with the most amazing team around and getting to help the best patients around achieve and maintain their dream smile is why we do what we do. Thank you for contributing to such an incredible year in 2013, and we can’t wait for what 2014 has to bring!

Falmouth Dental Arts wishes you and yours a very happy and healthy 2014!