The blaring sound of the alarm yanked Kasey from her deep sleep. Today was gym day.
She slowly turned and saw the time being brightly illuminated by her digital clock.
She raised her hand and smashed the snooze button.
Minutes later, the alarm blared again.
She smashed it again.
Kasey wasn’t having it. She shut the alarm off and stayed in bed.
She made a strong argument to herself in that moment. “I deserve a skip day”. She may have been right, but unfortunately, she ended up skipping the next 180 days too.
This was a common pattern for Kasey. For the last 10 years or so, she would get motivated, start working out and then quit a few weeks later.
The biggest obstacle for Kasey was getting started everyday, especially on cold mornings. Having to get up, dress, drive to the gym and then start the workout was mentally tough.
She eliminated that whole step by buying equipment (e.g. treadmill, chin up bar, mats, etc.) for her home.
The next obstacle was doing workouts that were too intense, long and / or complicated.
Kasey created a simple and relatively short workout for each day. In the beginning, she only walked / ran for 20 minutes and then did a few sets of calisthenics (push-ups, chin-ups, and sit-ups).
The next obstacle involved the steps between getting out of bed and starting the workout.
The night before every workout, she would lay everything out.
Her workout clothes were on the dresser. Her socks and running shoes were on the floor. And a bottle of water, a light snack and a towel were next to the treadmill. She was ready to go every morning.
All these little “tricks” worked. For the first time in her life, Kasey worked out consistently over a long period of time (over a year). And she actually fell in love with running and is currently training for a half marathon!
Fortunately for our teeth and gums, these same “tricks” can be used to develop a consistent dental “workout” too.
How many of us fall into this pattern? We get our teeth cleaned. We get motivated by the hygienist to floss everyday. We do it for 2 weeks and then…
We fall right back into our old habits.
Well…that’s probably most of us. So how do we change that?
Just like Kasey did, we need to remove all obstacles. Make your dental “workout” as easy as possible. Here are just a few examples.
- Brush and floss in the shower. It’s your excuse to stay in the shower longer! WaterPik sells a water proof water flosser that can be used in the shower (1).
- Chew sugarless gum with Xylitol. Five times per day is ideal. Best brands are Spry (2) and Epic (3).
- Have floss everywhere (e.g. kitchen table, car, purse, work, etc.). You need to floss at least once per day, but 2-3 days is even better.
- Have mouthwash at work. At a minimum, you can rinse with mouthwash after eating lunch. Brushing and flossing too would be ideal of course.
Just like working out, consistency is the key to keeping your teeth and gums in great shape.
If you are currently looking for a dentist in the Taunton, MA area, go see Dr. Mark Turner and his team.
They may not help you at the gym, but they will help you stay on a consistent path to maintain healthy gums and teeth for life.