How to Combat Dental Problems by Dr. Smita Choudhari

Dr. Smita Choudhari

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Smita Choudhari


4 min read


What may seem harmless habits like overbrushing, nail-biting and mouth breathing can lead to serious dental problems and other illnesses like hypertension. If you want to know which abnormal oral habits to avoid, read the blog to know important inputs from famous dentist Dr. Smita Choudhari.

Key Takeaways

  • Dental problems can arise in the future as a consequence of bad oral habits
  • Common abnormal oral habits include thumb sucking, lip biting and bruxism
  • Children with bucked teeth face difficulty in closing their mouths and chewing

Are you facing dental problems? It could be due to the everyday habits that we tend to ignore. We make multiple choices daily, big and small, that affect our oral health and lead to dental problems. However, knowing which oral habits are good for you and which one's harm you more than you realise is essential. Let’s try to understand which kind of dental problems can arise in the future due to bad oral habits with Dr. Smita Choudhari, owner and director of Dr. Smita’s Dental and Orthodontic Center, Keshav Nagar, Pune.

How Can Bad Oral Habits Cause Dental Problems?

You might be wondering how oral habits can lead to dental problems. Still, according to Dr. Smita, “Most dental problems affect people not because of genetics or family history, but because they pay little or no attention to their oral habits.” Practicing good dental hygiene is the key to maintaining good oral health, which includes a healthy mouth, teeth and gums. Shockingly, 85-90% of adults in India have dental cavities, followed by 60-80% of children. [1] In addition, dental problems like dental caries, oral cancers and periodontal diseases are a cause of national concern in terms of oral health in India.

However, which bad oral habits affect our health? Well, most dentists advise you to brush your pearly whites twice daily. But if you are brushing your teeth too hard, it can damage your teeth and gums. Dr. Smita states, “We often see people with crooked or bucked teeth thinking this is genetic, but that’s not completely true. Abnormal oral habits can greatly impact oral health and cause dental problems.”

learn how to Combat Dental Problems -47

Common Oral Habits that can Cause Dental Problems

Shifting to healthier oral habits will positively impact your health. However, to shift to a healthy regime, you must know which abnormal habits you must let go of. According to Dr. Smita, some common bad oral habits that cause dental problems are:

  1. Thumb sucking
  2. Finger sucking
  3. Tongue thrusting
  4. Lip biting
  5. Nail biting
  6. Bruxism
“Thumb sucking and finger sucking can cause dental problems like bucked teeth which we usually see in early childhood or school-going children. Children with bucked teeth will face difficulty in closing their mouths and chewing. In addition, their speech will be altered”, added Dr. Smita.

Another common problem that children and even adults indulge in is mouth breathing. “Mouth breathing is an abnormal oral habit that can cause dental problems like bucked or crooked teeth, swollen gums, tonsils and bad breath,” said Dr. Smita. She also added that if mouth breathing is not corrected, it can lead to snoring, obstructive sleep apnea and severe illnesses like hypertension and coronary artery diseases.

It like bruxism are prevalent in childhood. According to studies, bruxism is mainly found in 8-10% of adults during sleep and decreases with age. [2] Dr. Smita told us, “People with bruxism can develop dental problems like worn out teeth, sensitivity, and their fillings will wear out early. However, abnormal oral habits and dental problems can be avoided if it is identified by a professional.”

Treatment for Dental Problems and Abnormal Oral Habits

Abnormal oral habits can be corrected if detected early. If you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above, try consulting a nearby dentist to gain an expert opinion. Dentists can assess the root cause behind your dental problems and suggest a treatment plan to help you and provide relief. Dr. Smita said, “Dentists can use interceptive devices like habit-breaking appliances and suggest exercises to prevent the patient from indulging in abnormal oral habits. Some common habit-breaking appliances that can cure include a tongue crib, night guard, thumb guard and oral screen.”

Instead of suffering from dental problems and indulging in home remedies, try talking to a specialist. Even if you notice your children developing abnormal oral habits, consult an orthodontist immediately. Bajaj Finserv Health aims to raise awareness about health problems and focuses on preventive healthcare. You can also book online doctor consultations through the app to consult any specialist from the comfort of your own.

Published on 31 Oct 2022Last updated on 22 Mar 2023

Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.

Dr. Smita Choudhari

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Smita Choudhari

, BDS , Master of Dental Surgery (MDS) 3


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