5 New Years Resolutions for a Healthier Smile

Every year, many of us make New Year’s resolutions for our health and wellness. Whether it’s losing a few pounds, quitting a harmful habit or starting a healthy discipline, January is an opportunity to make a fresh start for the better.

To follow are five smile-worthy New Year’s resolutions to consider for your oral health. We’ve also included reassuring facts on how First Choice Dental provides peace of mind for those who’ve avoided the dentist based on fear, cost or just plain being busy.

Five Doable New Year’s Resolutions for Your Smile

  1. Brush & floss daily. Brushing twice-a-day and flossing daily keeps harmful bacteria and plaque at bay, freshens your breath, and brightens your smile — which is typically the first thing people notice about you. Plus, it only takes a handful of minutes each day to floss and brush, so once you get into a routine it will be easy to maintain!
  2. Make water your beverage of choice. The health benefits of proper hydration are as true for your smile as they are for your body. Part of maintaining a healthy smile is keeping the pH level in your mouth at a good level. A healthy mouth is a non-acidic, neutral or alkaline mouth, with a pH level of 7.0 or above. All acidity weakens teeth. Minimizing the amount of time that acids are in contact with teeth can minimize damage. Drinking water with meals rinses harmful food particles away from teeth and helps restore your mouth to a neutral pH level more quickly than other beverages. This makes your mouth, and your dentist, happy. Drinking water as opposed to other beverages like juice, coffee or soda between meals hydrates the tissues in your mouth and reduces the intake of harmful acids contained in those other drinks.
  3. Choose whole foods & avoid processed foods. What’s good for your body is good for your smile in terms of nutrition. Processed foods are typically higher in sugar and starch than whole, unprocessed foods, so they break down and turn to harmful sugar in the mouth and body more quickly. Sugar and acid on the teeth accelerates the plaque-building process, which leads to decay. Whole foods tend to have more fiber and crunch, too, which helps naturally cleanse your teeth as you eat. And many fruits, veggies and grains have vitamins and minerals which are like super foods for your teeth. An additional benefit? More crunching means more chewing, which produces more saliva, the body’s natural pH-restoring method for your mouth.
  4. Check to see when your last dental appointment was. Every single day, we see patients who can’t believe it’s been more than six months since their last dental visit. Time flies! You may not realize how overdue you are for your dental checkup or cleaning. Your First Choice Dental office is more than happy to check the date of your last visit and schedule appointments for a cleaning, or to see your dentist, as needed. We’re even tech-savvy, offering automatic email and text reminders, to help you stay on track.
  5. Resolve to get the dental care you need. Many of us can recall bad or even traumatic experiences at the dentist as a child, which may have you initially resisting making this particular goal part of your New Year’s Resolutions. But today’s dentistry has changed for the better — especially at First Choice where we’re committed to comfort-conscious care that helps keep your teeth, and your mouth healthy! It’s time to stop letting past experiences keep you from the care you need, and we’re here to make sure you’re extremely well taken care of.

Below you’ll find several comfort-conscious services and technologies that make a visit to your First Choice dentist a comfortable and anxiety-free experience.

5 Reassurances to Help You Get the Dental Care You Need

Gentle, comfortable care. Every First Choice dentist in Madison and Dane County, WI, is trained in the latest comfort-conscious techniques and is committed to making your dental visit as easy as possible — in other words, pain- and anxiety-free. Many of our patients who avoided the dentist for years because of negative dental experiences or fear have exclaimed, “you’ve helped me overcome my fear of the dentist!”

Diagnodent for early detection. The diagnodent is a tool that helps each dentist at First Choice Dental detect cavities even before they’re visible to the human eye. This helps us go above and beyond the scope of a purely visual examination to see where problems may lie. And the earlier your dentist detects damage to your tooth surfaces, including decay and cavities, the more likely we can fix the problem in a painless, non-invasive way.

Laser Dentistry for no-shot, no-drill appointments. Early detection of cavities makes it possible for your dentist to use laser dentistry, as opposed to the traditional shot and drill. Heat, vibration and pressure are the primary causes of pain associated with the use of a traditional dental drill. And often, patients tell us they dread the shot more than anything at the dentist. Laser dentistry can avoid both, with fewer shots, less need for anesthesia, less use of the drill and fewer numb lips! Not all dentists offer laser dentistry, but at First Choice Dental, all of our dentists are trained in and adept at using this comfort-conscious dental technology for gentle, comfortable care.

Sedation Dentistry helps you get the care you need, without fear. Dental phobia is incredibly common, and we frequently care for patients who previously avoided the dentist for years — even decades in some cases. Conscious sedation dentistry requires special training, which our sedation dentists have. With medication taken orally, you can relieve your dental anxiety, get the care you need with little or no memory of the procedure, and restore your smile’s health and comfort. We offer free consultations for those who want to learn more.

Complete Health Commitment. At First Choice Dental, the dentists and dental specialists in our Madison and Dane County offices are ready to be your complete oral health team. Our goal is to get your mouth to a healthy state where we can prevent problems before they happen. With services like free oral cancer screenings, expertise in headache therapy for TMJ disorders, sleep dentistry expertise, and a complete team of dental specialists including orthodontists, endodontists, periodontists and oral surgery, there’s no need to run all over town to different providers. We’re here for you in whatever capacity you need us.

Call First Choice Dental for more information or request an appointment today. We look forward to caring for your smile, and helping you keep your New Year’s resolutions in 2015!