I hope that all of you have had a wonderful holiday season and a chance to relax and spend time with family and friends.

As we are all well aware, the new year is often considered to be the time to take stock of your life and determine the changes that we wish to make.

While New Year’s resolutions are often broken before the end of January, a simple way to keep our promises to ourselves, is to make changes that are actually achievable. For example, instead of promising to lose 50 lbs. by summer time, it is often easier to promise to try eating better, such as cutting out all bread.

The same for your smile. Instead of promising yourself that you will be the perfect dental patient and achieve all that your dentist is recommending such as Invisalign treatment , it may be easier to take baby steps.

For example, dental professionals North York are always nagging our patients to floss their teeth. Well, in our office we try to get our patients to accomplish this in a simpler manner. This is accomplished by just leaving the container of floss out on the bathroom counter; either beside your vitamin, or medicine or your toothbrush. If the floss is left out, and seen but not touched, there is the little nagging feeling of not doing your best. But if you actually pick up the floss, and use it, you will experience that great feeling of accomplishment and know that you helped to accomplish your goals.

Why floss? Well floss gently wipes away plaque from around and in between your teeth. This plaque is made up of bacteria and these bacteria contribute to both decay and gum disease. But that’s not all. There is a high association with these bacteria and all sorts of diseases including cardiovascular disease, pre-term delivery of babies and more!

By the way, if you have never done the following, this is also a great motivator to floss: After flossing, pass the floss by your nose and inhale. It is pretty gross smelling!! If you are the type of person who takes pride in their personal grooming, knowing that this smelly plaque is left on your teeth if you don’t floss, can be a very strong motivator to get the floss going every morning!

But the most important part to remember, is that plaque is a large colony of a multitude of different bacteria and flossing is the most effective way to remove this gooey gross mess.

Oh, by the way, if you are one of those people who think that the Waterpik can replace flossing, think again. As I tell my patients: think about a dirty dish… Does it get cleaner with just water running on it or do you need to wipe it with a cloth to remove the sticky debris left on the plate? Same thing for flossing. Nothing works better than floss!

So for one of those New Year’s resolutions, that is relatively easy to keep, consider adding daily flossing to your list