On my last bi-yearly visit, I had a hygienist who scared the bejeepers out of me. A sub for my usual very sweet and chatty gal whose daughter also attends my daughter’s school, I was trapped in her chair learning about how not flossing has been tied to to major illnesses all because of the germs inside our mouths creeping into our immune systems. While I’ve adopted and taught my children good oral hygiene habits, I had no idea there was such a clear connection to our overall health.
Its our youngest that I worry the most about. As a child in early elementary school with brothers in middle and high school, its easy to overlook some of the basic reinforcements that seemed second nature when her brothers where the same age. Our schedule is different, our expectation for her independence higher, and our lives are simply busier. This is no excuse, but its the truth and I’m not happy that like 50% of children, she has already had one cavity while neither of her brothers have had any to date. While I hate to admit it, she eats more sugar and sticky food than they did at the same age so its even more important that I take the challenge to make sure she learns these habits now, before she gets braces and its even more important to keep those pearly whites clean and debris free.
To participate in the challenge, I’ve got a box of supplies to try and here is how we plan to win:
1. There can be more germs in our mouth than the entire population of the earth. Really…let that sink in for a minute ~ beyond gross! We are going to add a 30-second rinse with LISTERINE® Antiseptic twice a day ~ this will give 24-hour protection against germs that cause plaque and gingivitis. How easy is that? Yes, there will be stickers and a chart involved and I don’t just mean for the kids!
2. Brushing alone misses 75% of your mouth ~ I had no idea and this just makes my border line OCD cringe. We are going to brush with the REACH® TOTAL CARE Multi-Action Toothbrush which removes up to 90% of plaque which surely has to mean your whole mouth is much cleaner and that can’t be anything but good news.
3. Over one third of us don’t eat our favorite foods because of untreated cavities, gingivitis and more. For my little one, we are going to use LISTERINE® SMART RINSE® Anticavity Flouride Rinse to give her 12 hour cavity protection that will actually strengthen her teeth 99% more than just brushing alone. While we need to be more vigilant about making sure she doesn’t eat bubble gum all spring long at her brother’s baseball games, its certainly smart to give myself a little help in a place where I know I need it.
4. Almost 75% of Americans suffer from some kind of gum disease and never even know it. Again, that just makes me cringe. Flossing plays a huge role in combating this and keeping tooth enamel white so we’ll all be using REACH® TOTAL CARE Floss to get the added benefit of pearly whites that are also clean.
I’d love to see you join me in this challenge so check out www.Walmart.com/AHA/Listerine/Reach to get great tips from leading dental experts and as always, great value and prices on oral care products. Taking care of your teeth saves you time and money in the long run. Its adopting the habit that you need to make strides to change. Along with other social media moms taking the challenge, ‘ll be tweeting a bit over the next few weeks with the hast tag #healthyhabits so check that out for inspiration too. And tell me, honestly, do you floss, brush, and rinse daily? If not, now is a great time to start!
Disclosure: I received products and compensation from Johnson & Johnson and The Motherhood as part of my participation in the Oral Care Challenge. All thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own.
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