Summers are here and most of us look for an icy relief, whenever we step out and mostly we look for the easiest resort to this by indulging in the delicious ice cubes either as a part of a drink or popsicle. A couple of ice cubes in your drink is no big deal and if you indulge in eating an ice cube once in a blue moon, that is fine too. Although for some, eating ice is a lowkey addiction. If you love eating shaved ice, crushed ice or just chewing up on an ice cube, you are in for a surprise.
You might believe that since ice is just water, how bad can it be. We have some bad news for you. Eating ice has several underlying issues and may cause more if you continue with the habit. Recent studies have shown that it can cause various health issues and is an indication of an underlying medical condition.
The compulsive need to eat ice is known as pagophagia. Since it’s caused due to underlying illnesses, treating them should also get rid of the eating disorder. Check out these few health issues that may occur if you’re in the habit of eating ice.
1. Eating disorder
This habit might be due to Pica which is an eating disorder, and eating ice, pagophagia, is a variant of this disorder. Pica is described as the uncontrollable need to eat items that do not come under the food list conventionally. It’s mostly the things that have no nutritional value like dirt, chalk, hair etc.
2. Damaged Teeth
The inconsistent amount of ice can cause your teeth to have severe damages. It can lead to tooth sensitivity or even cracked enamel. If you chew ice, the sharpness of the broken ice can also cause harm and infections to your gums. Therefore, eating ice is not recommended for your general oral health.
3. Iron Deficiency
The symptoms of iron deficiency include tongue inflammation and soreness plus an unusual diet. Chewing ice is studied to be caused due to the deficiency, as it provides relief. Recent studies have shown that oral supplements to cure iron deficiency also leads to breaking the habit of eating ice. The links to both are huge, therefore, if you crave eating ice all the time, it’s best to get a check-up by your doctor.
4. Emotional Issues
Eating disorders are mainly caused due to emotional issues which can be caused due to stress or trauma. Chewing ice might be a coping mechanism, so if you’re seeing a growth in your habit of eating ice, you might want to consult a doctor and check on the underlying illness that might be getting brushed aside.
In conjecture, eating ice is really not good for your health. Other than damaging your oral health, or being a coping mechanism, it does not provide any nutritional value. Although, for pregnant women, there is an exception. Not ice cubes, but ice chips can help relieve morning sickness, nausea, overheating and heartburn which are common pregnancy symptoms.
So, if you want a chilled relief from the summer sun, opt for indulging in ice cubes or just drink a cold glass of water. If you can’t seem to shake off your need to eat ice, consult a doctor.
Is Eating Ice Cube Good or Bad For Heath?