5 New Year's resolutions worth keeping
|By Dr. Harold Katz - Bad Breath Expert|
SUMMARY: Want your New Year's resolution to last? We have a trick for you.
Posted: January 2, 2014
On the eve of 2014, many of us made New Year's resolutions. Every year we vow to work out more, lay off the snacks before bedtime or save more money. While these are great personal challenges, let's face it - they hardly survive through January. The trick to keeping them? Instead of committing to broad life changes, make specific goals. Check out the five New Year's dental resolutions that you should keep for brightening your smile, improving the oral of your kids and avoiding cavities and canker sores.
1. Mark your calendar for new toothbrush day. Dentists emphasize that if you hold on to your dirty brush for longer than three months, the bad bacteria lodged on the bristles may transfer back into your mouth. It is recommend that you swap out brushes or bristle heads for electric toothbrushes every two to three months. That means starting in January, get a new brush. From then on, highlight your calendar for April 1, July 1 and October 1.
2. Limit sugary snacks. Since you can't spell "overall" health without "oral" health, this New Year's resolution may be tied to one of your other dietary vows. Grazing on sweets throughout the day leaves your teeth drenched in harmful sugars and acids that wear down your dental enamel, triggering cavities. Sour candies are especially acidic and are believed to cause canker sores. To lower your sugar intake, try these two methods. First, have your spouse or roommate hide the candy from you. There's plenty of truth behind the old adage "out of sight, out of mind." If the chocolate bar isn't on the counter mocking you as you take a bite out of the apple, you're less likely to crave it. Second, only eat sugary sweets during meal time. This is when your saliva production peaks, allowing the natural cleaning agent to rinse out sugars and help neutralize your mouth.
3. If you want whiter teeth, what better time to start than Jan. 1? Check out TheraBreath teeth whitening options. Besides making you look more employable, straight, white teeth give you a younger and more attractive appeal, according to an Oral-B study. If you're trying to save a pretty penny, there are other cost?-effective methods to brighten your smile, too. Steer clear of staining foods and beverages, including red wine, tea and soda. Chew teeth-whitening gum. For ladies hitting the town, a different shade of lipstick can affect how white your teeth look. Whereas yellow-toned or bright orange lipstick gives the appearance of yellow?ish teeth, berry red lipstick enhances the whiteness of your smile.
4. Get your kids excited about healthy teeth. Parents are role models for their youngsters, so spice things up when it comes to brushing and flossing. Dentists point out that the health of baby teeth are often an indicator of the health of adult teeth. Make brushing fun. One way to do this is to download your kids' favorite song - two minutes is ideal - to your smartphone and play it for them while they brush. Swap it out weekly, daily, monthly or whenever your child wants a change. This should improve the oral health of kids. Another trick is to let them pick out their favorite toothbrush and toothpaste. Bubble gum, winter mint and berry blast all make for fun flavors.
5. Floss once a day before bed. Does the dentist tell you upon every visit that you need to floss more? Do your gums bleed every time you floss? Then you are a leading candidate for this resolution. Experts note that flossing before brushing is more likely to develop into a habit. This is because after scrubbing with toothpaste we believe our mouths to be clean enough, thus postponing flossing until a later time So, pull out out the thread at night before bed and floss away. If you're still struggling to remember, place a post-it note on your bathroom mirror or floss in the shower.