So I am shifting my role for a few moments from your Family Dentist to the Resolution Police: have you honored your New Year’s list to this point? Many of us are catapulted into the New Year by a surge of starry-eyed resolutions that typically fail before January 31st. With health and financial wellness topping most lists, you can satisfy both by a renewed commitment to a revamped dental regimen. While basic in nature, these mandates will elevate your physical, social and emotional health when regularly followed and most take only minutes out of your day, so why not start today to see results tomorrow? They include:
- Tooth Brushing: at least twice a day for at least for two minutes.
- Flossing: at least once a day to remove food, bacteria and plaque which tooth brushing may omit.
- Mouthwash Use: at least once a day. Regular mouthwash use compliments your brushing and flossing regimen by reducing tartar, plaque and slowing the onset of gingivitis. In addition, it freshens breath and “wakes up” your mouth in a way that is invigorating and refreshing.
- Toothbrush Replacement: a quarterly commitment or immediately post-cold, flu or if bristles are frayed.
- See and Pre-schedule Your Dentist Visits for Every 6 Months. Each and every one of you and you will always be respected and greeted in our office with a courteous, smiling face and a wagging tail by our professionally trained therapy dog Laser!
- Schedule pending dental work sooner before small problems evolve into larger ones
- Quit smoking, as smoking, among many other evils, slows down the body’s ability to fight infection, especially in the mouth and gums. It is documented to result in twice the number of infected tooth roots and tooth loss as non-smokers and causes tooth discoloration, bad breath and an increased risk of oral cancer.
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Back to grade school with emphasis on the major food groups: whole grains, fruits and veggies, lean protein and low or non-fat dairy foods. Nutritionists remind us to shop the “perimeter” of the store where the most wholesome foods are located, and to avoid the center aisles where foods packed with additives, preservatives and sugars are. Tooth decay ensues from regular intake of carbs, acids and sweets, so choose your grocery list wisely.
- Drink More (Fluoridated) Water, which removes the sugars, acids and food particles that build up in your mouth and cause tooth decay and cavities. Of course, it is calorie free and keeps you free from dry mouth and equipped with the proper amount of saliva which is also needed to fight tooth decay.
10 Smile: Wide and Often. While it would stand to reason that feeling happy first results in a smile second, research shows that the opposite is in fact true, and that the physical act of smiling actually nurtures feelings of happiness. This basic chemical reaction is confirmed by Dr. Isha Gupta (IGEA Brain Spine & Orthopedics, Union, NJ), who reminds us that when we smile, hormones such as dopamine and serotonin are released by the brain and these are associated with happiness and reduced stress. So you can “trick” yourself into being happy by the mere act of smiling.
At Strongsville Dental & Laser Aesthetics, we have an array of services that will cater to that beautiful smile, whether it be Lumineers, Veneers, Botox, Facial and Lip Rejuvenation, Teeth Whitening – to name a few – all of which are guaranteed to make your smile more and more often! It is this winning smile that is integral to business success and emotional wellness; as trite as it may seem, exercise your smile daily and good things will follow.
Written by Dr. Chris Theodorou, DMD