As the end of another year approaches, you may be thinking about what you’d like to accomplish in the new year. How about resolving to achieve a happier, healthier smile? Good dental health is essential for good overall health, making it a worthy addition to your list of New Year’s resolutions.
Even better, you can improve your dental health with a few simple changes and minimal effort. Keep reading – we have four resolutions you can set now to start you on the path to a more magnificent smile!
1. Make Flossing a Daily Habit
Flossing once a day as recommended by dental experts is a habit that many Americans find difficult to keep – one national study found that just over 30% of the population reported flossing daily. While 37% of people reported flossing regularly, 32% of people reported never flossing at all.
These results are disheartening because flossing is critical for good oral health – it removes food particles and plaque from between teeth and under the gumline, where your toothbrush can’t reach. Over time, trapped particles and plaque can lead to tooth decay and gum disease.
This year, make flossing a habit. If you’re not used to flossing regularly or at all, start small. Floss once or twice a week for several weeks, then increase to every other day. Before you know it, you’ll be flossing daily like a pro.
2. Eat More Fruits and Veggies
Good nutrition contributes to good dental health. Fresh fruits and veggies contain antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that strengthen your immune system, oral health and overall health. Additionally, crunchy, fibrous produce like apples, carrots and celery help stimulate saliva production and scrub plaque and food particles from your mouth.
This year, try switching out some of your regular snacks for fresh fruits and veggies. When you’re craving sweets, swap a cookie for a sweet, juicy apple. And when you need something crunchy, swap a bag of chips for satisfyingly crisp baby carrots.
3. Quit Smoking
Smoking or using tobacco products is one of the most harmful things you can do for your oral health, as well as your overall health. Smoking or using smokeless tobacco increases your risk of oral cancer, lung cancer, gum disease and gum recession. The good news is that quitting – no matter how old you are or how long you’ve been smoking – reduces the risk of developing adverse health conditions and improves your life expectancy.
This year, make it a goal to kick the habit. The American Heart Association has several resource options that you can explore. We also recommend joining a support group and enlisting the help of family and friends to act as cheerleaders.
4. See Your Dentist Twice This Year
Receiving regular dental exams can prevent oral problems from developing or worsening to the point of causing significant damage. Your dentist will monitor your oral health and create a regimen that addresses issues or areas of concern. Additionally, oral health is a good indicator of your overall health. Check-ups can help your dentist identify other health issues that may require attention and care.
This year, schedule two appointments with your dentist for cleanings and exams. If you have ongoing oral health issues, your dentist may recommend more frequent visits.
Call Boyett Family Dentistry to Schedule Your First Appointment in the New Year
Boyett Family Dentistry is taking new patients! Our Winter Haven, FL, family dental practice performs routine cleanings and exams, restorative work, and emergency procedures. Start the new year off right by calling us at 863-294-9200 to schedule your first appointment.