Briarfield Dental - March 2018

March 2018

THE FIRST SIGNS OF SPRING

When the Golf Schedule Arrives

Every winter, my brother has the uncanny ability to call when we’re having a particularly nasty snowstorm. I know he does this on purpose, because he always makes a point of asking how we’re handling the cold before telling us how he spent the day working up a sweat in his garden. He lives in Florida, so needless to say, his winters are a little more temperate. I like to think I get the last laugh come summer when I’m out playing golf in the sun and he’s trapped inside with his air conditioning. To be honest, as we trudge through the gray and cold of February each year, I envision myself sitting on a beach somewhere far away from winter’s grasp. But I never find myself fleeing south for good. I love living where we can enjoy the changing seasons. Plus, as rough as winters can be, it’s nice to live in a place where everyone knows how to deal with snow. “Over time, I’ve learned a person’s enjoyment of winter is proportional to how many winter activities they enjoy.” My son, Matt, lives down in Atlanta with his wife, Anne. If there’s even a threat of ice, the whole city shuts down. That can be pretty rough on travelers going through the busiest airport in the world. Atlanta isn’t prepared for snow. They don’t have a team

of plows ready to clear the roads and salt the sidewalks at a moment’s notice. Matt got to enjoy a few days off this year, and while our winter up here was pretty mild in comparison to other years, there were times I wished I could enjoy a snow day myself. Over time, I’ve learned a person’s enjoyment of winter is proportional to how many winter activities they enjoy. Here in Northwest Ohio, where everything is flat, snowfall doesn’t present much of an opportunity for new activities. However, for about a year, my wife and I lived in Traverse City, Michigan, where the locals genuinely look forward to winter. When the temperature drops, the people of Traverse City are more than ready to go out and enjoy the cold weather. They take advantage of skiing, snowshoeing, tubing,

and even ice fishing. Personally, I’ve never seen much sense in going onto a frozen lake, carving a hole in the ice, and sitting out there for hours. It’s not my cup of tea. While I enjoy the different seasons, spring is by far my favorite. You might have heard that the groundhog saw his shadow this year, which means six more weeks of winter. I don’t often believe Punxsutawney Phil’s predictions of when the seasons will change. For me, spring comes when I find a copy of my golf league schedule and Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit edition on my doorstep. When that day comes, you can bet I’ll be ready to buy more sunblock and wish winter a fond farewell. – Dr. Stuckey

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Your Dinner Table Might Be

the Key to a Happier Family

Call All Hands on Deck Mom or Dad shouldn’t be expected to cook by themselves for every meal. This is family time, after all, so call in the kids! Make sure their tasks are age-appropriate — leave sautéing vegetables to the high schooler and let your first-grader set out the cups instead. This is the perfect opportunity to teach kids valuable kitchen skills and to take some of the burden off your plate. Plus, if your kids are picky eaters, inviting them to be part of the cooking process can make them more inclined to try the finished product. Don’t Stress Yourself Out It’s okay if you’re too busy on a Monday to cook dinner. There’s always Tuesday. Or you can take a trip to your favorite family restaurant. Family meals should be fun, and that can’t happen if you’re stressed. Don’t feel pressured to make each meal perfect or to prepare a three- course dinner every night. Chicken and rice can get the job done as long as you’re all sitting around the table as a family.

The family dinner is a staple of years gone by. These days, the only time you see a family sit together and break bread seems to be at Thanksgiving. This is a shame, because regular family dinners are incredibly important! It’s a time to bond with your loved ones that can have a positive impact on your kids’ lives. A study published in the journal Pediatrics found that kids who regularly partake in family meals are less likely to experience depression or engage in drug use. Furthermore, The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University determined that kids who eat family meals five to seven times a week bring home better report cards. Even when schedules are busy, you can make family dinners fit into your agenda with these tips. Be Flexible About Mealtimes Dinner doesn’t have to be at 6 p.m. on the dot. If Kamala has a karate tournament in the evening or Peter needs to stay late at school for art club, why not break out the healthy snacks and make dinner happen a little later or earlier? Plus, the meal you share as a family doesn’t have to be at dinnertime. If there’s time in the mornings, sit down for breakfast. If you have the opportunity on weekends or during a school break, grab lunch together.

No matter how hectic your schedule may be, making family meals a priority is always worth the investment. Who’s in the mood for meatloaf?

Electric or Manual? You know brushing your teeth for two minutes twice a day is essential to maintaining your oral health. What’s open to more debate, though, is which tool is better at cleaning your teeth: manual or mechanical brushes? This feature takes out the guesswork and makes it easy to brush your teeth for the recommended time. For children who try to get out of brushing at every chance, the timer can turn brushing into more of a game and less of a chore. More Comfort Perks f a Powered Toothbrush

If you’re looking for an electric brush, you’ll find a wide range of options, from SoniCare and Oral B’s standard products to Quip’s sleek, stylish subscription-based model. Oral-B’s Oscillating-Rotating- Pulsating Power Toothbrush line recently became the first electric toothbrush to receive the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Most electric toothbrushes are rechargeable and have removable tops that you can change every few months as the bristles start to wear. So, what’s the bottom line? If an electric toothbrush gets you to brush

The American Dental Association (ADA) states that both manual and powered toothbrushes are effective at removing plaque. But other clinical trials suggest positive results for people who switched to electric brushes. When the ADA surveyed 16,000 patients who’d replaced their manual with mechanical brushes, over 80 percent reported improved oral cleanliness. While the debate has yet to be settled, you might personally enjoy some of the added features of an electric toothbrush. Timed Brushing Most electric toothbrushes have timers, which encourage you to brush for a set amount of time, usually two minutes. When you press the power button, the toothbrush begins to vibrate and will continue to vibrate for two minutes.

If you have arthritis or dexterity difficulties, an electric toothbrush’s ability to vibrate on its own removes some of the pressure from your hands, making brushing a more comfortable

and manageable experience. Improved Efficiency

An electric toothbrush can move much more quickly and precisely than your hand alone, so you’ll be able to cover more surface area in the same amount of time and potentially remove more plaque. An electric toothbrush also discourages brushing too hard — the extra pressure on the brush will make the vibrations noisy and uncomfortable.

more often and more effectively, it’s the right tool for you.

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Why Do We Care About White Teeth? It happens to everyone. One day, you’re standing in front of the mirror getting ready for work and you notice your teeth have begun to take on an unsightly shade of yellow. Even the most diligent

Enhanced Mood In addition to improved confidence, whiter teeth increase feelings of happiness. When we don’t feel self-conscious about our smiles, we smile more. Smiling releases endorphins, so this act can create a feedback loop of even more happiness! Lower Risk of Oral Problems Individuals who whiten their teeth are more likely to maintain that bright shine for as long as possible through proper dental hygiene. Regular oral care is vital for preventing serious health risks like tooth decay and gum disease.

certain opinions about them. Whether these opinions are justified or not is another matter, but that prejudice can affect how we treat each other and how we view ourselves. Since whiter teeth encourage more positive thinking, people who whiten their teeth often report a feeling of higher self-esteem and confidence, and this can translate into amazing results in other areas of life, as well.

brushers and flossers will eventually notice their teeth aren’t as bright as they would like.

Unless you only drink water and eat colorless gelatin,

your teeth are going to become stained over time. Why do yellowing teeth bother us so much if they are a natural part of the human experience? Well, our aversion to unsightly stained teeth may have something to do with psychology.

Improved Social Connections

Who would you rather spend time with: someone who smiles and laughs freely, or someone

who never cracks a smile and rarely speaks up because they are embarrassed by their teeth? When we feel confident about our teeth,

During your next visit, don’t forget to ask about which whitening treatments we recommend. We can help you enjoy bright, beautiful teeth every day!

the way we carry ourselves and interact with others changes. This confidence carries over into job interviews and even first dates.

White, shiny teeth are perceived as healthier than teeth that are yellow or stained. When we see someone with stained teeth, we often form

Laugh Corner

Dr. Stuckey’s Playlist

Slackstring’s Anthem for Wednesday (and Every Day)

We’re shaking off the last threads of winter, and to help get into the mood for spring, I find myself reaching for “Wildwood,” the latest album from the California band Slackstring.

The Daily Breeze, a newspaper from Los Angeles, has called their sound “pure, feel-good music,” and I can’t think of a more perfect description. All four band members were born and raised in Manhattan Beach, California, and the band’s sound perfectly captures the spirit of the Cali beach life. When you put in one of Slackstring’s albums, you’ll find yourself listening to a blend of classic rock, acoustic blues, and reggae. It’s the kind of easygoing rhythm that will transport you to a sandy beach the moment you close your eyes. Fans of Bob Dylan, The Doors, and Bob Marley would benefit from adding a few songs by Slackstring to their playlists. A couple of my favorite songs are “Wednesday Mornings” and “Road to Nowhere,” both of which inspire a sense of laid-back, easygoing vibes that are always welcome as we head into the warmth of spring.

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Goodbye, February

What Every Parent Needs to Know About Family Dinners What You’ll Prefer About Electric Toothbrushes Are Whiter Teeth Worth the Trouble? Dr. Stuckey’s Playlist Are You Keeping Up With Your Goals?

Keeping Up With Your New Year’s Resolutions What You Need to Do to Stay On Track and Push Forward

March is the month of springtime and rejuvenation. It’s also the time when most people have forgotten about the resolutions and goals they set earlier in the year. Have you neglected or given up your goals? If you have, you are far from alone. Most people let their goals fall to the wayside at least by March, if not long before. It comes down to four simple reasons.

Setting goals is the easy part. A lot of people say they want to lose weight, eat better, learn a new skill, or try a new hobby, but they don’t define their goals any further. Vague goals aren’t really goals at all. The best way to stay on track is to be as specific as possible. Understand what you need to do to accomplish your goals. Make sure you have access to the appropriate resources that will help you make progress.

Resources come in all forms. Look to the people around you for accountability — your family, friends, neighbors, or colleagues. If you don’t want to involve anyone else, keep a notebook or diary to track progress. Or if you are learning a new skill, such as a foreign language for a trip next year, the resource you need may be an app on your phone. When you bring specific goals together with the necessary resources, achieving your dreams becomes more possible than ever before. You just have to take steps to avoid falling into the mistakes listed above. Set attainable concrete goals, track your progress, and check in with someone to keep you accountable. Since it’s been a few months, take a moment to review how far you’ve come since January. What do you need to do to make 2018 your best year yet?

1. They set goals that were out of reach or unrealistic.

2. They had zero accountability.

3. They set abstract goals.

4. They didn’t track progress.

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