We understand that good oral health is not always easy. It takes time and effort, and it might seem annoying at times to remember to floss everyday or get out of bed when your forget to brush your teeth. However, forming strong oral health habits is not as hard as it sounds, and it is critical to your health.
We have all dismissed the sweet hygienist or dutiful dentist who reminded us to try to floss more and not to skip a brushing at least once. We think it will take too much time to add flossing to our daily routine or that is is just not worth it, but both of those are misconceptions. It will not take that much time, and creating healthy habits such as this will have a great impact on your teeth, your health, and your life.
To help you start forming healthy oral health habits, we have done some research on how to build and create habits. Hopefully, these ideas will not only help you take care of your teeth, but also they may be useful in other areas of your life.
We have all heard it only takes 21 days to form or destroy a habit, but it actually takes much longer than that, so be patient! Studies have shown that it actually takes at least 66 days to make a habit stick. The art of creating a habit is creating an effective system that works for you.
First, you need a “cue” that reminds you to brush your teeth of floss. For me, this can be leaving my floss on the counter or a note reminding me to floss on my mirror. The second step is actually taking the time to complete the task. In this case, listen to your dentist. Brush. Floss. Gargle. Finally, make sure your reward yourself whether this be silent praise or some special time reading a book before bed. In this case, try to avoid food! But, make sure to be proud that you remembered!
It sounds easy, and it is. We are creatures of habit. The more we do this, the easier it becomes. If you miss a day though, don’t throw in the towel. Winners never quit, and neither should you. Just do the best you can for as long as you can, and you will be on your way to a beautiful healthy smile.