One of the most common New Year’s resolutions people make is exercising more and getting in shape. But in 2020, why not get your oral health in shape instead? Studies show that a healthy smile increases your self-confidence and makes others see you as more intelligent, attractive, and likable. Not to mention that your dental health contributes to good overall health as well. And with the 4 easy dental habits below, it’ll be easier than ever to stick to your New Year’s resolution this year – no gym membership required!
1. Consume Less Sugar
These days, sugar is in everything, which can be a recipe for getting major cavities. It may not be realistic to give it up entirely, but it’s important to be mindful of how much you’re having and make efforts to minimize it.
It’s also important to recognize that it’s not just how much sugar you have, but how frequently you have it (i.e. sipping on one soda over a 2-hour period is more harmful than drinking two sodas in 30 minutes). Remember the phrase, “Sip all day, get decay” to remind you not to sip, snack, or graze on sweet foods and beverages.
2. Be Consistent With Brushing Your Teeth
While it may seem basic, make sure you don’t forget about the importance of brushing at least twice a day for two minutes. If you feel rushed in the mornings or too tired at night, you can always find ways to make it easier for yourself. For example, keep a spare toothbrush and tube of toothpaste at work, or brush right after dinner when you have more energy. Consistency is key, so don’t give up if you miss a brushing here and there. Just pick up where you left off!
3. Don’t Forget About Flossing
Flossing is easily one of the biggest challenges for many people. If you struggle with it, start by setting an attainable goal. For example, if you currently don’t floss at all, do it just 3-4 days a week at first. From there, it will be easier to do it every day. You may also have more luck with different tools such as floss picks. There are many options at the store, so experiment until you find what works for you.
4. Schedule a Checkup and Cleaning
Checkups and dental cleanings are absolutely essential, so be sure to see a dentist every six months. These visits ensure that any small problems are found earlier before they turn into painful toothaches or other emergencies. And with early detection, treatment is often far easier and less expensive.
With these 4 simple dental habits, you’ll head into 2020 with great oral health, self-confidence, and a smile that feels great.
About the Author
Dr. Thomas Lloyd is a family dentist with many years of experience who focuses on prevention as much as possible. To help his patients start the new year off on the right foot, he always reviews the best dental habits to minimize the dental work they’ll need. If you’d like to know more about keeping your smile healthy in the new year or have any questions, he can be reached via his website.