Taylor Dental News Dec 2017

3 Creative

GIFT WRAP ALTERNATIVES

THERE’S SOMETHING MAGICAL ABOUT seeing a stack of presents wrapped in bright, multicolored paper. However, that enchanting scene quickly evaporates a few hours later when all those wads of wrapping paper and plastic bows are chucked unceremoniously into the garbage. What if we told you there are countless ways you can still enjoy wrapping and unwrapping presents, without all the waste? Here are a few creative gift wrap alternatives to consider this holiday season. BROWN PAPER BAGS With the holiday season comes holiday shopping, and if you opt out of plastic grocery bags, you’re sure to have a surplus of brown paper bags in the pantry. Drop a present into the bag, tape it shut, and you’re good to go. Add some simple lace or a ribbon for an old-timey feel or get creative with stamps and hand-drawn artwork. This wrap job lets your imagination run wild. OLD MAPS AND CALENDARS These days, pretty much every phone has a built-in GPS, so you probably won’t need the map from your 1999 road trip anytime soon. If you still have an 2 Harmful Habits That Lead to Broken Teeth Why is this? Well, the abundance of hard candy, popcorn, and other sweet treats between October and January wreaks havoc on your teeth. Often, when a broken tooth reaches emergency status, it’s actually already cracked. At that point, all it takes is a piece of hard food for it to reach breaking point. Fortunately, there are simple ways to improve your tooth health and prevent cracks during the holiday season. First, stop overindulging in sugary foods! Sugar breaks down your enamel, so the more you eat, the weaker your teeth become. Plaque builds up in your mouth whenever you consume food. The bacteria that make up plaque love sugar, and when they consume it, they produce a certain type of acid. This acid wears away healthy tooth enamel and eventually breaks down teeth. Even worse, if you already have a crack (even one you can’t see or feel), sticky, sugary foods will only further irritate the area. And though it might seem like a healthy alternative, dried fruit is on this list of culprits — its dense sugars easily cling to your teeth. Do you know when most dental emergencies happen? I’ll give you a hint: “Here comes Santa Claus, here comes Santa Claus.” That’s right — holiday season.

old map, why not use that for wrapping? The unusual designs guarantee your gifts will be one of a kind. And don’t worry if there are notes scrawled across the paper. Old events or directions will add some unique flair to the presents. FUROSHIKI Fabric is an excellent substitute for wrapping paper. You can use a scarf to create two gifts in one or pull out scraps of fabric from old projects. The traditional Japanese practice of furoshiki is all about wrapping goods in fabric. Described as “functional fabric origami,” you’d be amazed at how a few well-placed folds can turn your gift into a work of art. Learn how to wrap anything, from boxes to bottles, at furoshiki.com/techniques. You don’t have to follow the same gift wrap habits year after year. After the effort you put into finding just the right present, you should be able to make your gift wrap just as special. Find a method that’s uniquely you and get started!

Sugar aside, you may have another addiction that harms your teeth. Are you a serial fingernail biter or ice chewer? Both can lead to cracked and broken teeth. If you aren’t looking to drop a vacation’s worth of dough on your dental visits, consider quitting — and quick. The Academy of General Dentistry estimates habitual nail biters will spend up to $4,000 more in dental bills over their lifetime.

Finding a replacement routine for detrimental chewing habits is key to kicking the habit for good.

Have a pack of baby carrots to munch on when you’re tempted to reach for your fingernails. You can also place a rubber band around your wrist and snap it when you feel tempted to nibble a nail. Each painful snap can serve as a reminder to stop your destructive habit. Talk with your dentist about other ways to strengthen your teeth and prevent breakage. After all, you want to spend your holidays in the easy chair, not the dentist’s!

To combat this, make small changes to lower your sugar intake. Replace your daily soda with a cup of tea or sparkling water. Another beneficial change is switching from dried fruits to fresh ones.

Taylor Dental • www.AndrewTaylorDental.com • (850) 478-8005 2

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