Do you have good oral hygiene? Do you keep your teeth and gums in tip-top condition?
I used to be very lazy where oral care is concerned. For example, I would brush my teeth in the morning, but I rarely brushed at night, simply because I never knew if I would be eating after brushing. Flossing was also never a habit. I didn’t like using the mouthwash either because it would burn my mouth. I didn’t think there would be any implications from a few nights of neglecting my oral care.
Well a few nights turned into weeks, which then turned into months, and then turned into years. It became a longstanding bad habit. Last year, a visit to the dentist revealed that I had a few dental caries (i.e. decays) in my molars. It made me realize the importance of cleaning my teeth every day, and thereafter helped me cultivate the habit of good oral care.
I think what made the mental shift was when I consistently saw the amount of plaque and food debris I would dislodge as a result of flossing – despite having brushed my teeth earlier. It made me realize flossing does make a big difference – it serves a unique function that brushing is unable to fulfill. If I don’t floss, I would be going to sleep with little food pieces stuck between my teeth, which then serve as nests for bacteria to gather. Definitely not something I want happen.
I like this joke which PE reader, Charles, shared with us during last year’s run of 21DHL. He asked his dentist which teeth he should floss, of which his dentist replied with a tongue-in-cheek comment: “Only floss the teeth you want to keep!” Makes you realize how important flossing is, especially if dentists harp on it all the time!
Here’s a short 1:54 minute video on how to floss your teeth properly:
#3. Brush at least twice a day
Do you brush your teeth at least twice a day? Once after you wake up, and once before you sleep?
Most of us know we should, but we don’t. We opt for the lazy path, going to bed without brushing our teeth. While it’s convenient, doing this for a prolonged period is only going to bite us in the future.