Jason Schermer September 2019

3 Strategies for a Healthier Smile

There’s no silver-bullet or cookie-cutter approach to good gum health. Our genes play a huge role in our overall health, so what works for some people might not work for others. Some patients get on just fine by brushing with a manual toothbrush and flossing once a week. Others will get gingivitis instantly if they don’t use an electric toothbrush, prescription floss, and a Waterpik while standing next to an open window on the full moon. September is National Gum Care Month, so we’re looking at a few strategies you can try to help take better care of your gums. Floss When it comes to gum health, floss is “old reliable.” Gum disease is the result of plaque that builds up under your gums, where the bristles of your toothbrush can’t reach. Flossing helps you clean out those spaces, banishing bacteria before it becomes a problem. The question of waxed or unwaxed floss comes down to preference. Even flavored wax doesn’t make a difference. If you’ll use mint-flavored waxed floss every night, then that’s the best kind of floss for you. Waterpik Many people were first introduced to the Waterpik by seeing it in their grandparents’ bathroom, so

these dental tools have a reputation of being “for old people.” But gum health has no age restriction! A Waterpik works by using a small stream of pressurized water to wash away debris from between your teeth and under your gum line. For people who struggle with flossing, switching to a Waterpik can be an effective way to improve their oral health. Oil Pulling The practice of swishing edible oil around in your mouth is something one of your coworkers surely swears by but a lot of experts are hesitant to recommend. However, recent studies suggest that oil pulling with coconut oil may have real benefits. A 2015 study found that teenagers between the ages of 16 to 18 who pulled with coconut oil showed a “statistically significant decrease in the plaque and gingival indices” after just seven days. Keep in mind that oil pulling shouldn’t be the only strategy for taking care of your gums, but incorporating it into your oral care routine might be beneficial for some. Ultimately, the key to finding an effective strategy for your gum health is to create a habit you can stick with. Consistency is key in all areas of your health, and your gums are no different.

Stop Overlooking Your Gums

Leah’s Bad Dad Joke of the Month

Tomato Salad With Horseradish

Why did the coffee file a police report?

Savor the end of tomato season with this spicy and healthy salad. Because the horseradish-spiked dressing packs a punch, you only need a little to add a lot of flavor.

Ingredients •

1/4 cup mayonnaise 1/4 cup buttermilk

2 1/2 lbs heirloom and cherry tomatoes, roughly chopped 2 scallions, thinly sliced

• • •

2 tbsp prepared horseradish Salt and black pepper, to taste

Directions 1. For the dressing, whisk together mayonnaise, buttermilk, and horseradish in a mixing bowl; season to taste. 2. In serving bowls, arrange tomatoes and top with scallions.

3. Lightly drizzle tomatoes and scallions with dressing and serve.

It got mugged.

Inspired by Food & Wine magazine

exceptionalsmiles.com

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