Q:

Is eating ice bad for a person?

A:

Quick Answer

Eating ice may have some negative health consequences including harming the teeth, weakening any fillings in the teeth or lacerating the gums. As noted by the Mayo Clinic, excessively chewing ice may be a sign of anemia, or low iron in the blood.

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Full Answer

Since ice is such a hard substance, a person who chews it runs the risk of tooth or mouth damage. If the urge to chew ice is constant and excessive, the person should visit a medical professional to be evaluated for anemia.

Constantly chewing any hard substance, such as candy or ice, has the potential to harm the teeth. The pressure used to break up the ice wears down the enamel on the teeth. If the enamel wears down too much, it weakens the tooth, causing it to crack or chip.

The repetitive hot and cold cycle in the mouth from chewing ice can result in a weakening of any fillings in the teeth. The filling may expand too fast due to the temperature change, resulting in the possibility of cracks in the tooth.

Chewing ice may also cause lacerations to the tongue and gums. As the ice breaks up in the mouth, the sharp shards may cut the inside of the mouth, increasing the risk for infection.

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