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Tooth damage due to hair, nails etc

User Level:
Patient
Posted by: roach66  (9 years ago)
Hi Checkdent!

I have a question about biting your own hair and nails.. My mum always said that chewing on your hair and nails is very bad for the teeth. Is there any truth in it? My head says no, but thanks to checkdent hopefully I can confirm my suspicion!

Greets,
Rory
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: Lara2011  (9 years ago)
Hi Rory!

I asked my dentist exactly the same question. The main reason you should stop biting you nails is first and foremost that you contaminate your mouth with a colorful variety of germs and bacteria from your hands! In extreme cases nail chewing can also weaken your roots and even cause your teeth to chip.

Obviously, he said that, many people bite their nails without experiencing any dental problems but that in extreme cases, it can go very wrong...

We should all listen to mom ;)

Regards,
Lara
User Level:
Dentist
Hello Rory!

It all depends on the dosage! If you just bite on your hair now and then it probably won't cause any harm.. if it's a frequent occurrence ie. it becomes a habit, it can result in damage to the nails, hair and even the teeth.

More often than not, it is the former that suffers the most damage, meaning your nails and your hair.

First and foremost, you should think about why you do it! In what situations do you find yourself biting your hair?
Posted 9 years ago
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: rblake  (9 years ago)
My kids do this all the time when they watch movies or play computer games. I've tried everything to get them to stop, but nothing works.

Now, the other day I saw something interesting (and slightly scary) at the drugstore. Basically an awful-tasting liquid that you brush onto nails or whatever it is they are chewing and it's meant to keep them from doing it... Maybe a bit of a radical move, but I don't know how else to stop them!

Any advice?
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: lucy229  (9 years ago)
That is how my mom got me to stop biting when i was a kid, that nasty tasting nail polish. It worked!!
User Level:
Patient
Posted by: diamond  (9 years ago)
I had the same problem. I bite my nails when I get nervous. Try to dip all your fingers in nail polish remover every morning. Then when you go to bite them they will taste like polish remover which is very strong and disgusting. You can also get nasty tasting nail polish. Both solutions worked for me.:-)
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