2024 is just around the corner and seemingly everyone is boasting about their resolutions to be happier and healthier in the new year. Whether you hope to save more money or shed a few pounds, now’s the perfect time to reflect on the changes you’d like to make in your life. Don’t forget to include your dental health on the list of things you’d like to improve! If you’re looking for ideas, keep reading for 3 resolutions that will keep your smile happy all year.
Resolution #1: Establish a Routine
As work and school resume after the holidays, it’s tempting to skip parts (or all) of your oral hygiene routine. Whether you’re in a hurry to get out the door in the morning or drop dead exhausted after a long day, it’s easy to quickly brush your teeth and call it a day. If you’re not flossing, though, then you’re missing out on a key component of your dental care. Toxic bacteria can penetrate around your tooth and under your gumline where your toothbrush can’t reach, and cause cavities or gum disease. Instead, set an alarm or make a note for your bathroom mirror reminding you to brush your teeth for a full two minutes twice each day, and follow it with dental floss.
Resolution #2: Straighten Your Teeth
If you’ve been putting off orthodontic therapy, there’s no better time than now to pursue treatment. If your pearly whites or bite are misaligned, you’re more likely to develop TMJ (temporomandibular joint) stress which can cause a stiff or locked jaw as well as headaches and facial tension. Furthermore, it’s harder to keep your teeth clean if they’re overcrowded or overlapping each other.
Fortunately, many dentists offer Invisalign to address such issues without the need for bulky metal braces, wires, and rubber bands. Instead, these clear plastic aligner trays fit over your teeth to gradually shift them to their ideal places. If you start treatment now, then by this time next year you could have the perfectly straight smile you’ve always dreamed of.
Resolution #3: Quit Bad Habits
Did you know alcohol can give you dry mouth? It’s a diuretic, which means it removes water from your system which can leave you dehydrated. Dangerous microbes flourish under these conditions and can cause bad breath on top of other oral problems. To add insult to injury, alcohol is also highly acidic which can erode your enamel. You’d be doing yourself a favor by resolving to reduce your consumption in the coming months.
Another unhealthy habit to consider quitting is smoking. Tobacco products, whether cigarettes or flavored vapes, contain nicotine. This chemical lowers the oxygen content in your blood and reduces its flow, meaning that your body is less able to deliver essential nutrients to your teeth and gums. You could develop serious health conditions like cancer of the mouth or lungs, in addition to yellowed and corroded teeth.
By prioritizing your oral well-being, you can have a beautiful, healthy grin all year long!
About the Author
Dr. Ira Newman has over two decades of experience providing patients with a wide range of dental services to enhance their lives by improving their oral well-being. He attended the State University of New York- Binghamton and then earned his dental degree from Emory University of Dentistry. Whether you need a simple checkup or require more complex treatments, he has the expertise and state-of-the-art technology to help. If you’d like an appointment, you are welcome to request one on the website or by calling (212) 924-6890.