Skating Uphill - March 2019

Living a Healthy Lifestyle

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Combining a healthy lifestyle feature with a discussion about
women who give back? Piece of cake, my friends!”
– The Uphill Skater –

I go to the dentist. You go to the dentist. Since we all must do it, let’s discuss the benefits of good oral hygiene as it relates to being in a totally good healthy zone. In this column we have talked about everything from sex to heartburn to ingrown toenails, and now it is time, dear ladies, to talk about teeth. I know it’s boring, but as I researched the topic for this article, I found out tons of things I did not know.

We all know to brush twice a day, but did you know it’s possible to over brush? I did not even know what “over brush” meant until my son was told he had receding gums and had to have tissue grafts to correct the situation. It was expensive, painful, and took weeks to heal. So, twice a day with a soft brush, floss, and rinse with a mouthwash.

Flossing is old hat. All dentists tout the importance of flossing, and I almost never do it. However, I save myself with two relatively new procedures: First, I have a Waterpik. It has a little round soft brush on the end, and I use that instead of the pointed squirty thing. I also now use a mouth rinse, and my dentist tells me that this has proven to be of great value in a program of good oral hygiene. I rinse regularly. It’s easy, and I like easy. Sorry if this is too personal, ladies, but that’s the facts of the matter. My dentist recommended Listerine in any flavor.

Brushing and rinsing are both good for several reasons. One of the important offshoots of poor dental hygiene is bad breath. Ick, not that! Often bad breath can be a sign of something worse than not brushing your teeth. Decay, gum infection, and even pre-diabetes can be causes of bad breath. Poor dental care can even cause poor lung function.

What else can we do to complete our healthy oral hygiene picture? Pretty much all dentists recommend these two things: Quit smoking and seriously cut back on drinking sugary drinks. We do not need another lecture on smoking, obviously, but sugared drinks are terrible culprits, too. The sweet liquid not only adds empty calories to your diet, but sloshes around your whole mouth and throat and remains on your teeth for hours after consumed unless you brush immediately. Not good!

All those things having been said, and on a bit of a different subject, did you know there are more female dentists today than men? The dental practice I go to is a mother-daughter team. Both dentists do implants, retainers, and some oral surgery, as well. I love these ladies. The mom is a raw-feed vegan and the daughter is a Southern cook with a capital “S.” I am a vegetarian who eats fish, so we go round and round. The mom was a pioneer in many areas of dental practices and partners with several other offices for a variety of services. She is about 70 and still going strong, I might add.

Being a woman dentist may not seem earth shattering or world changing to some, but these two women are out to make the world a better place. Both have volunteered in foreign mission work, do gratis work for indigent patients, and mentor other young women. We each do what we can for the sisterhood I hope, and try to not only do good for others, but to support each other as achievers, movers, and shakers. So brush, floss, rinse, and SMILE, ladies! Love, Judith

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