Tooth loss is a common problem among adults. Whether it’s caused by gum disease or trauma, losing one or more of your teeth can kill your self-confidence and even make it more difficult to speak and chew your food. However, if you take proper care of your teeth, you will be much more likely to keep them for a lifetime. Here are five effective ways to prevent missing teeth:

Stop Grinding Your Teeth

Grinding your teeth is one of the worst dental habits you can have. When you grind down on your teeth, it can put a lot of stress on them and eventually wear them down. If you don’t think you can stop teeth grinding on your own, you shoulder consider wearing a mouth guard.

Limit Sugary Foods

Too much sugar isn’t just bad for your waistline; it’s also harmful to your teeth. Sugar can linger on the surfaces of your teeth for hours, creating an attractive environment for bacteria. If you get a craving for a sugary treat, make sure to rinse your mouth out with water afterward.

Don’t Ignore Signs of Gum Disease

Advanced gum disease is one of the leading causes of tooth loss because it forces the teeth to separate from the gums. That is why it is important to pay attention to early warning signs of gum disease. If your gums look redder or puffier than usual, you should bring that up to your dentist right away.

Don’t Use Your Teeth as a Tool

Teeth might be strong and hard, but that doesn’t mean you should use them to loosen a knot or open up a bottle. If you frequently lose your teeth as a tool, you can wear down the enamel and make them more prone to chips and cracks.

Say No to Cigarettes

Smoking is a terrible habit to start and can negatively affect your body in a number of ways. It is particularly bad for your teeth because it promotes tartar buildup and reduces the blood supply to your gums, putting them at risk of infection.

If you treat your teeth well, there is no reason why you should not be able to keep them for the rest of your life. However, if you still lose one or more of your teeth, you have the option of getting dental implants. These implants are durable and look just like your natural teeth.