Every year we do it again: resolve to better our lives with new patterns of behavior. New Year’s resolutions have become somewhat of a joke in our culture, but at Lifetime Family Dental in Gilbert, we believe that new habits really can make our lives better. It only takes two weeks for a new habit to be formed. So in the spirit of the season, we offer these ideas as starting places for your own fresh start to better dental health:
- Brush and floss twice a day. OK, we have said this before, but we really do want to reinforce the benefit of developing this habit. Nobody is perfect, so everybody has room for improvement!
- Take a walk. It’s amazing what a break can do for your imagination as well as your body. The stimulation of movement can erase writer’s block, generate new ideas, reduce tension and lower stress hormone levels. A brisk pace is best, but even 20 minutes at a leisurely pace will feel as good as a nap.
- Drink more water. More than 60% of the body is made up of water. No wonder health professionals advise us to drink more. You may experience an increased need for a bathroom, but that will pass in a week or so. The benefit is worth it!
- Be thankful. Thankfulness and gratitude are easy habits to develop. Take a minute or two every day and think of three things you are thankful for. Your overall attitude will shift and your heart will smile.
- Read a book. Reading is learning, and learning is a lifelong adventure. When you spend 20 minutes a day with a book, you will have mental stimulation that far surpasses television.
- Do the hard thing first. Get the worst or most dreaded task out of the way first and the rest of your day will feel like a summer vacation at the beach. But save the Pina Colada for later.
- Practice forgiveness. In our culture, people are easily offended. But offense merely creates a chain that binds us to bitterness. Holding on to offense won’t change those who have hurt you, but it will keep you in resentment. Break free and take steps to practice forgiveness toward those who have offended you. It will go a long way in restoring your well-being.
- Get more sleep. During sleep, toxins are flushed from your brain. Sleep experts recommend three REM cycles per night for optimum health. That translates to eight or nine hours for most people. When you get quality sleep, you will experience more alertness, more energy and a more positive outlook on life. And as Shakespeare wrote: “To sleep; perchance to dream…” —dreams are the way we process life in our subconscious. It is one way to better understand ourselves and our circumstances.
Lifetime Family Dental wishes you a wonderful New Year and new decade. Try several of these resolutions for your fresh start to better dental health. When you come in for your next appointment, let us know how they are working out for you!