Biting Nails: How Does It Affect My Teeth? 

December 16, 2022
a woman biting her fingernails needing to see a Dentist in Greater Northdale

The habit of biting is more common than you imagine. Anxiety and stress are some of the most common causes of this unpleasant habit. Obviously, the fingers and cuticles are the most damaged part, at least visually, of nail biting. However, a dentist in Greater Northdale will tell you that most of the risks of this habit can cause you dental and oral health problems. 

an anxious man biting his fingernails needing to see a Dentist in Greater Northdale

Consequences of Nail Biting for Your Oral Health 

Gum Swelling 

When you bite your nails, the bacteria that you have on your fingers will pass to your mouth, which triggers an infectious process that will affect the gums, ending up inflaming them. When this infection isn’t treated in time, it can turn into gum disease, and even some nail pieces can become embedded between the teeth or gums, producing wounds. 

Halitosis and Caries 

Among the usual reasons for bad breath (halitosis) are poor oral hygiene and the presence of bacteria, many of which are transferred through nail biting. This contact of infectious microorganisms with the mouth can also increase, in some cases, the risk of caries. 

Jaw Disorders 

Continuous biting affects our bones and muscles that join the skull to the lower jaw. This contributes to the appearance of alterations in the temporomandibular joint or commonly known as TMJ. Among the discomforts we may feel are problems opening and closing the mouth, headache, earache, and jaw pain. 

Tooth Wear and Tear 

Compulsive and prolonged nail-biting damages the teeth and can cause excessive deterioration of the incisors, eroding their enamel and causing micro-trauma to these teeth. In extreme cases, the teeth become chipped, fractured, or even broken. 

a Dentist Greater Northdale checking a female patient's teeth

Looking for a Dentist in Greater Northdale? Give Us a Call! 

We understand that anxiety levels in today’s society are high, but it’s essential that you put into practice certain tricks to stop biting your nails or seek help from a specialist. Here at Lake Park Dental, we are ready to assist you. Your teeth will thank you!