Monday, February 13, 2017

Dr. Grimes 20-1-7 Challenge Week #7: FLOSS


Dr. Grimes' 20-1-7 CHALLENGE: 
  • For the first TWENTY weeks of this year,
  • Pick ONE healthy change every Sunday, and
  • Commit to that change for SEVEN days.
20-1-7 Challenge Week #7

This week is a straight-forward nod to both our future "older" us and our dentistry colleagues:   FLOSS!! 


When I think about flossing, I remember a commercial from years ago with a spunky elderly woman munching on a carrot, saying "you don't have to floss ALL your teeth- just the ones you want to keep!" And then I think of my 94 year old mother-in-law, who kept all her teeth beautifully functional by doing just that...and then I wonder why the heck I cannot seem to maintain this simple habit.

Logic has it that if we brush our teeth twice a day, every single day, then we should be able to add flossing to the routine, but my experience is that most people do not. I find plenty of motivation to floss the month (or at least couple of weeks) before each routine dental appointment, but then I seem to fall off the wagon. However, I'm ready to give it another go...so I'm trying a new technique this week. 

Using a medication dispenser has me back on track taking my prescription medication and my doctor-recommended vitamin supplements, so I am going to try to mentally LINK flossing with taking my medication by putting a note in my pill box. 

Use whatever reminder works for you. I'm grossed out by yucky teeth, so sticking a picture of that on my bathroom sink would only turn me away, but I know other people who have used this for motivation. Conversely, a picture of a GORGEOUS toothy smile might motivate others. PS. With Valentine's Day tomorrow, perhaps thinking of kissing someone special- and how much nicer that image is with healthy teeth and gums- will spur us on this week! Also, if your Valentine treats include chocolate or other sweets...extra dental care is another "valentine" we can give ourselves.

BOTTOM LINE: We all KNOW flossing helps our teeth and gums, but most of us need some extra reminder/motivation/nudge to make this a daily habit. Figure out your nudge, and DO IT!

20-1-7 Challenge Week #1:
At EVERY meal, I added one more COLOR (translation, one more serving of fruit or vegetable that is a different color than whatever I started with on my plate.)   

20-1-7 Challenge Week #2: 
Put a new "twist" on my vegetables by using a new veggie spiralizer ($6 at the grocery store). I replaced pasta and rice with spiraled zucchini or yellow squash.

20-1-7 Challenge Week #3:
USE a medication dispenser (for prescription AND my recommended vitamins).

20-1-7 Challenge Week #4: 
Daily 12 minute meditation (Kirtan Kriya guided meditation).

20-1-7 Challenge Week #5:
Drink a glass of water four times every day (meals plus afternoon snack).

20-1-7 Challenge Week #6:
Exercise BOOST! I actually enjoyed this challenge, and completely changed up (added to) my daily walks with our dogs, adding in at least an extra mile or two on new roads every day. And bonus- for the record- the scale budged in the right direction.

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