What can eating ice do to you?

Info Guru,

Rate This Article:

3.9 / 5.0
chewing ice
Chewing ice damages teeth and is often an indication that a person is anemic
  • Share
  • Tweet

Ruining your teeth is on the list of what can eating ice do to you

Are you the culprit? The chronic ice-chewer? Or is the culprit the woman in the cubicle next to yours who chomps ice all day long, which is extremely irritating to listen to. Ice eating does not add calories, but is it a wise thing to do? What can eating ice do to you?

If you crave non food items this is called ‘pica.’ It means a person eat things that have no nutritional value, such as paper or chalk. A subset of pica is craving and chewing ice, which is called pagophagia. This craving can indicate the presence of anemia (iron deficient.)

Pregnant women low on iron may develop this compulsion. Individuals who have had gastric bypass surgery can easily become iron deficient and they too may chew ice habitually. Anyone that is anemic may take up this habit.


When anemic, a person experiences sores in his mouth or burning and ice chewing actually relieves these symptoms, which is one reason they acquire this habit.The person is unconsciously treating a symptom of anemia.

When anemic an individual experiences fatigue, dizziness, chapped lips, inability to concentrate, fast heartbeat, shortness of breath, more infections, lightheaded and may crave ice.

Craving ice can be a sign that the body is deprived of oxygen. Water contains oxygen and so does frozen water (ice.)

When anemic, a person possesses a low red blood cell count. Anemia infers with the blood’s ability to transport important substances throughout the body including and primarily oxygen. When red blood cells become diminished there isn’t room to put the oxygen in the blood. This can lead to failure of, or even the death of, organs. At this point, symptoms of anemia crop up.

Eating iron rich food boosts red blood cells. Vitamin C enables quick iron absorption by the body. Drink orange juice after your meal.

If discovered that a person is anemic – and compulsive ice chewing may be the first clue— once the condition is resolved the ice craving stops.

Cravings indicate deficiencies in some area. Ice craving is not going to cause a deficiency but it isn’t a source of any kind of nutrient and certainly not a source of iron. Ice that comes from hard water contains calcium and magnesium, that are acquired by drinking water.

Ice chewing can become habitual because it helps one refrain from eating or cope with boredom or stress.


Ice chewing causes tooth damage. Tooth fractures, cracks and chips occur when biting down on something as hard as ice. Once a tooth is fractured, an abscess can occur. Persistent ice chewing ruins the tooth enamel. Ice-chewing harms teeth.

When chewing something hard and cold it can shock a tooth nerve. Teeth aren’t flat. When people chew the planes on the top of teeth assist the chewing motion. Biting down on ice at an atypical angle can chip the enamel or crack a filling.

Incessant chewing damages the soft tissue located inside teeth. This leads to toothaches as well as oversensitivity to hot and cold foods and drinks.


When a person is overwrought they can assume behaviors as a reaction to their stress. Ice-chewing is one of them. This issue needs professional treatment by a cognitive behavioral therapist.

Furthermore, ice chewing annoys those nearby because the chewer makes loud crunching noises. This leads to uncomfortable interpersonal relationships and tensions in a small work place.

Rate this Article

Click on the stars below to rate this article from 1 to 5

  • Share
  • Tweet