This year, do yourself a favor and choose to take on one…or two.. or even all of the following:
1. See the Dentist Regularly
We get it: having someone poke and prod around the inside of your mouth isn’t exactly the most enjoyable pastime in the world, but if you see your dentist just two times this year you’ll be saving yourself from more unpleasant appointments (like having teeth pulled, getting dental surgery, or even just having cavities filled in) later on.
2. Eat Your Vegetables (and Fruits!)
Not only does poor nutrition make you more susceptible to a whole host of common oral disorders- including gum disease- but eating crisp fruits and veggies, like apple and carrots, can help freshen you breath and remove plaque. Who knew good dental hygiene could be so delicious?
3. Finally Use That Floss
We know it’s been sitting in your bathroom for months and you haven’t finished it up because you only ever use it when there’s something stuck between your teeth, but did you know that floss is actually the only thing that can remove that nasty plaque from between your teeth and below your gum line (which is where that darned tooth decay that’s been causing you so much pain lately usually begins).
4. Stop with the Sweets
For some, this resolution will be the hardest on the list, but even the sugars in savory carbs like potatoes and crackers can lead to decay, so why would you want to exacerbate that problem with chocolate covered cherries and candy bars? Well okay, we know why you would… but if you must, please try to remember to brush your teeth afterwards.
5. Make a Mouth Guard Fashionable
If you play any type of contact sport, good for you! You’re getting some great exercise, and a healthy mouth starts with a healthy body overall. However, you’re also putting your teeth at risk for fractures, chips, displacement. Choose a mouth guard that matches your uniform, and make a habit of sticking it in before you play. Your teeth, lips, and tongue will thank you later on!
6. Stop Grinding for Good
Grinding your teeth can lead to neck pain, a sore jaw, and aching teeth. Furthermore, it can cause your teeth to become flattened, jagged, and rough. Small chips may begin to appear as well. Over time, grinding your teeth can cause serious damage to the joint that lets you work your jaw, as well. If you suspect that you have a habit of grinding your teeth as you sleep, talk to your dentist about your concerns. He or she will evaluate your symptoms and help you find a solution that works for you.
Having great oral health is more than just having a pearly white smile, and good oral health is a direct reflection of your health and hygiene. Even if you don’t have the motivation or time (really, though, you do!) to take on all of the potential oral health New Year’s resolutions listed above, you’ll be amazed at the rewards you’ll see after taking on even one!