Chewing on ice cubes might seem as innocent as drinking water, but it can actually do a good amount of damage to your child’s teeth. Chewing on ice can cause gum injury, microscopic fractures in enamel (which can become larger fractures), and even broken teeth. Chewing ice is especially bad for those who have braces or have just had dental work done. And for those with sensitive teeth, chewing ice will most likely worsen, rather than numb, the pain.
Since many of our habits as adults begin when we are children, it’s important to stop your child from beginning this habit. And since our children learn from our example, save your own teeth by not chewing ice! There are many reasons that a person might chew on ice – encourage your child to switch to sugarless gum. If it’s the crunch you crave, avoid hard candy (which is not good for teeth either) and try a healthy alternative by chewing on carrot sticks, celery, or apples. Your teeth will thank you!