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Chewing Ice Can Lead to Various Oral Health Problems

Posted on 11/16/2020 by Moyer Office
Chewing Ice Can Lead to Various Oral Health ProblemsPica is the word to describe a pattern of eating non-food materials such as dirt, sand, hair, paper, or ice. It is normal to have a little ice now and again, but to be suffering from the pica syndrome, you would have to eat a lot of ice. Usually on a daily basis, and probably, several times a day. Not everyone who eats ice has pica, some people may just want to cool themselves down or enjoy the crunchy sensation. After all, ice may seem to be a harmless, inoffensive substance as it is made of pure water.

Ice is Not As Harmless as You May Think

It is commonly known that when two very hard substances are forced together hard enough, one of them has to give. Usually, it is the ice but, if you chew ice frequently enough, sometimes it will be the enamel on your teeth. Once the protective layer of enamel is penetrated, bacteria can enter the softer parts of your teeth and cause painful decay. In addition, fillings, crowns and braces are all made of substances that are less durable than enamel and even more likely to be damaged by chewing ice. What's more, putting freezing cold ice into your mouth causes fillings to expand and need replacing more often. If you chew ice frequently, you will probably get lots of cracks in your teeth which are too small to be seen but will lead to problems later on.

Frequent Ice Chewing Can Point to Other Problems

There is a good chance that anyone who feels the need to chew ice on a frequent basis suffers from a problem such as stress, obsessive-compulsive disorders or iron deficiency anaemia. Ronnetta Griffin, in her Youtube channel, Iron Queen, describes in detail how her iron deficiency anaemia makes her want to constantly chew ice. Remarkably, when she boosts her body's iron content, the need to chew ice goes away. Unfortunately, Ronnetta gives no clue as to why this should be so.

In summary; don't chew ice! Consider safer alternatives such as cool drinks, popsicles or slushies. If you have an ice chewing habit, feel free to discuss it with us. We will try to discover the cause, so that you can overcome the habit, and treat any existing damage to your teeth and gums.

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