Do you have a list of new year’s resolutions that you’d like to make? Over half of Americans make resolutions on any given year, and the majority have to do with health and fitness. If you are struggling to decide on a new year’s resolution, check out these three good habits that can positively impact your dental health.
Resolution #1: Floss Daily
You already know you should be flossing each day. If you don’t, your dentist or hygienist surely reminds you during each cleaning. And if you are experiencing any swelling, tenderness, or bleeding of your gums, you likely have gingivitis, which is the earliest stage of periodontal disease. Why not make it your new year’s resolution to get into the habit of flossing every day?
You can do this by connecting your flossing to something else that you’re already doing. If you are currently finding it hard to remember to floss, then connecting it to brushing your teeth (which you’re presumably doing before bed) isn’t working. How about promising yourself that you’ll floss immediately after dinner? (This can also stop you from eating dessert later.) Or floss while watching television or before you allow yourself to surf social media each evening.
Resolution #2: Watch Your Diet
Are you addicted to sugar? Many Americans are, and many of them don’t even know it. If you find yourself craving sweets every day or if you wake up wanting to eat something sweet for breakfast, chances are great that you have a bit of a sugar addiction. Breaking the addiction is a matter of cutting back and getting through a difficult day or two of intense cravings. Once you get over that hump, though, you’ll find that sugar isn’t on your mind nearly as much.
When you cut down on sugar and other processed carbs, you’ll find that you have more energy and you might even lose weight. Another benefit is that you’ll be less likely to develop dental cavities. Without sugar sitting on your teeth, bacteria in your mouth will be less active an won’t multiply as quickly.
Resolution #3: Stop Smoking
Smoking negatively affects most of your body, and your mouth and teeth are no exceptions. It’s a difficult habit to give up, but when you do, you’ll notice drastic health differences. You’ll be cutting your risk of heart attack, lung diseases, and certain cancers within a matter of days or weeks. You’ll also enjoy better oral health. Your dentist or doctor can give you some tips on how to quit smoking.
Whatever your new year’s resolutions, we wish you success! Best wishes for a happy and healthy new year.