New Year’s Resolutions for Healthy Teeth

Healthy TeethAs many of the posts on this blog have illustrated, one must travel the road to healthy teeth by taking a few steps daily – not just during occasional epic “road trips” to the dentist! The beginning of the new year is a great time to make resolutions that support healthy teeth and improved oral health. In this post, we’ll make several suggestions that could boost your dental well-being in 2016, and a few pointers for making those new habits stick.

Top Resolutions for Healthy Teeth

  1. Brush and floss regularly. If you can do nothing else, brushing twice daily with a soft-bristled brush and flossing once a day will make a huge difference in your oral health.
  2. Quit smoking! Public information campaigns have documented the damage that tobacco products (including smokeless ones) cause to your overall health, but smokers are also twice as likely to lose their teeth as non-smokers. Tobacco use has also been linked to oral cancer and severe gum disease. If you need a replacement habit as you quit, chewing sugar-free gum with xylitol can actually provide protection from tooth decay.
  3. Eat more fruits and vegetables. Antioxidants and other nutrients found in fruits and vegetables improve the body’s ability to fight bacteria and inflammation, helping to protect your teeth and gums.  Additionally, firm-crunchy fruits and veggies such as pears, apples and celery can clean plaque off your teeth and freshen your breath!
  4. Visit the dentist for regular checkups, and schedule long-delayed dental procedures. If you visit your dentist regularly, he or she can provide prophylactic cleanings and track potential problems as they emerge. And, of course, the sooner you schedule a needed procedure, the more quickly you can return to enjoying your healthy teeth!

How to Keep Your “Healthy Teeth” Resolutions

  • Keep your new habit simple to remember.
  • Track your progress, and make it tangible whether you’ve engaged in the behavior or not.
  • Invite accountability by talking to family and friends about your progress in establishing the habit.
  • Believe you can succeed in creating healthy teeth habits – if you believe you can, you will!

“The power to create more healthy teeth lies within you,” says Dr. Carol Ford, a cosmetic dentist practicing in central Phoenix. “Establishing new habits and sticking to them can make all the difference.”

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