About 64.7 million Americans aged more than 30 years have periodontitis (gum disease) – making this condition a growing concern in this country. If you have periodontitis, you may experience pain in the gums, bad breath, receding, swollen and red gums, or even tooth loss.

To reduce your chances of developing gum disease, you must take good care of your gums and your mouth. Healthy gums are the foundation for healthy teeth and a healthy smile.

Here’s how to keep your gums healthy so that you can keep smiling.

Brush Your Teeth Properly

Brushing your teeth properly can go a long way in helping you to have healthy gums. You need to brush your teeth at least twice a day using a fluoride toothpaste and a soft-bristle toothbrush.

Brush your teeth at a 45-degree angle to the gums and move the toothbrush in short strokes while pressing gently. Always remember to clean both sides of your teeth. You are supposed to replace your toothbrush every three to four months, or as soon as the bristles begin to fray.

How to Keep Your Gums Healthy: Floss Daily

When did you floss last? The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends flossing daily. Cleaning between your teeth removes plaque and food particles from between your teeth and gums.

Plaque contains bacteria that feed on sugar or leftover food in your mouth. The bacteria releases acids that can cause cavities by eating away the outer shell of your teeth.

If not removed, plaque can harden into a substance called calculus (or tartar) which collects along the gum line leading to gum disease.

Use Mouthwash

There are two types of mouthwash that you can use: cosmetic and therapeutic. However, you should not use mouthwash as a replacement for flossing and brushing.

A therapeutic mouthwash can help:

  • Reduce the speed at which calculus builds up
  • Prevent gum disease
  • Remove food particles from your mouth
  • Reduce the amount of plaque on your teeth

Look for the ADA seal when buying mouthwash. This seal indicates that the manufacturer of the mouthwash has demonstrated enough evidence to support the effectiveness and safety of the product.

However, children under the age of 6 years should not use mouthwash.

Choose the Right Toothpaste

There are many brands of toothpaste and whitening products in the market today. Unfortunately, not all of them are good for your teeth. When buying toothpaste, ensure it contains fluoride and there should also be the ADA seal on its packaging.

Get Regular Dental Checkups

Regular dental checkups are a must if you want to keep your gums healthy. It is during such checkups that a dentist can detect the early signs of gum disease and start immediate treatment. If you have bleeding gums, early detection of the cause can help prevent more severe problems from occurring.

During a dental checkup, your mouth will be professionally cleaned to help eliminate the plaque that you may have missed when brushing your teeth. This is the best way to ensure calculus doesn’t form on your teeth.

Eat the Right Foods

What you eat doesn’t only affect your waistline, it also has a great impact on your oral health.

Different foods have different effects on gum health. Some of the foods that you should incorporate into your diet include:

  • Green and black teas, these help in reducing bacteria
  • Vegetables and high-fiber fruits, as these help in cleaning the mouth
  • Foods that contain fluoride, which include some seafood and poultry products
  • Dairy products, such as yogurt, cheese, and milk, as these foods help in increasing saliva production
  • Sugar-free chewing gum to increase saliva production

It is best to avoid the following foods and beverages:

  • Alcohol, as it dries out the mouth
  • Carbonated soft drinks that contain sugar as well as citric and phosphoric acids
  • Starchy foods that get stuck on the teeth
  • Sticky sweets and candies that stay in the mouth for a while

Quit Smoking. You are probably aware that cigarettes are terrible for your lungs and heart. Do you know that smoking can also wreak havoc on your gums and teeth? If you are a smoker, you are four times more likely to develop periodontitis than a nonsmoker.

Smoking lowers your body’s immune function thereby increasing the risk of gum disease. By quitting this habit, you’ll lower your chances of getting gum disease and many other health conditions.

Brush Your Tongue

Flossing between your gums and brushing your teeth daily may not remove all the bacteria in your mouth. Your tongue accumulates a lot of bacteria during the day and if not cleaned, the bacteria can get transferred to your gums and cause an infection.

So, as you brush your teeth and floss, ensure that you also clean your tongue using your toothbrush.

Use an Electric Toothbrush

An electric toothbrush is a bit more expensive than a regular toothbrush but it does a better job. It helps in removing plaque and also prevents you from brushing your teeth too aggressively that might end up injuring your gums.

So, if you do not already have an electric toothbrush, you might consider investing in one today.

More on How to Keep Your Gums Healthy

Still wondering how to keep your gums healthy? Keeping your gums healthy is a personal responsibility and the good news is that it’s not expensive.

Rather than waiting until it is too late, you can start following the tips discussed above and you’ll be surprised at how you’ll have a healthy smile within a few days. Also, pay attention to any signs of gum disease.

Do not ignore any pains or swelling on your gums. The sooner a problem is detected, the easier it is to treat. Make an appointment to see a dentist whenever you notice any blood when you brush your teeth or when your gums become red and puffy.

If you want more tips on health & fitness, education, travel, technology, and fashion, you can visit our blog.

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These Are The Most Unusual Ways to Work Smarter Instead of Harder 1 - Florida Independent
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These Are The Most Unusual Ways to Work Smarter Instead of Harder

Millions of people work really hard. Everyday. But there is always a better or smarter way to accomplish the same things you have to do every week. And you probably have a productive routine that works for you. Most people do. You can still improve it though.

These are two of the most upvoted answers to this question on Quora: What are some uncommon ways to work smarter instead of harder? These ideas have worked for the productivity experts.

Answer by Nela Canovic, productivity hacker, writer, and Silicon Valley entrepreneur

Do your deep work (the hard stuff, the work that requires the most concentration) EARLY.

When exactly?

Many scientists say that the brain’s peak performance happens 2-4 hours after we wake up. If, for example, you wake up at 6, your peak times are between 8 and 10  a.m.

What are the benefits?

Doing your deep work early in the day allows your brain to focus fully on the problem at hand, with fewer distractions, less inputs from your environment, and with a lot of  energy that you’ve gained from a restful night. It’s the exact opposite of what can happen if you leave your hardest work for nighttime, after you’re done with all your daily activities and you are exhausted from the day.

How can I get into this habit?

1. For one week, keep a log of what you do during your peak times. Are you focusing on your important mental tasks? Are you learning new material, solving complex problems, reading, or writing? For most people, this time is usually spent commuting to work, checking email, making phone calls, watching or listening to the news.

2. Re-prioritize your peak brain performance time. Think of ways you could rearrange the things you do early that are less important to your personal and professional development. Like to stay on top of the latest news? Save this activity for your lunch break or right after lunch.

Emails are waiting in your inbox? Be careful of how much time checking email takes; it can seriously impact your day. Choose 2 blocks of time to go over your emails, one mid-afternoon and one closer to the end of your workday. It’s better to be proactive early (by doing your important work) and reactive later (responding to questions, providing input on discussions, etc.).

3. Create more space and time to your day by implementing a morning routine that can help you be productive. The benefit of a morning routine is that you jump start your day; you complete several tasks before moving on to work, school, or other responsibilities; you are more productive with your time; you feel more successful in what you do. I wrote a few ideas on developing a morning routine here.

Answer by Akash Sehrawat, Practices Kaizen ( act of continuous improvement ) daily

Here are 17 uncommon ways to work smarter instead of harder.

1) Find your passion: Life becomes much easier in the long run.

Sure, when you start out there will be doubts! No one will believe in what you are doing, but you need to keep moving no matter how much criticism you face!

All this doesn’t matter. What TRULY matter is the believe in yourself. Related post: Akash Sehrawat’s answer to How do you know if you’ve discovered your passion?

2) Passion is not enough. Find a purpose: Doing something which you are passionate is good. But is selfish. Nothing wrong with that. Now take a step forward and find a purpose.

For example: I am passionate about building muscle and becoming healthier. Good. Purpose: My mission is to help a million skinny guys gain muscle, and be healthy. Great!

3) Once you find your passion, and a purpose, Profits will come:

Passion: Baba Ramdev is passionate about Yog and Ayurveda.

Purpose: He propagated Yog on TV, through books and DVD and now through his company Patanjali he is providing natural ayurvedic products at reasonable prices! Patanjali’s Predicted Revenues by March 2017= INR 10,000 Crores.

Profits will come eventually. Just focus on helping lot of people.

4) Create, Consume, Communicate, in this order: Creating is the highest form of intelligence.

Here are few things you can create:

-A life that you want.

-Write a blog post on things that you are passionate about.


-Create a company.

-Create Products and Services that will make people’s life easier and so on and so forth.

Consume: While you are reading this article you are consuming. Reading fiction, non fiction, watching TV, etc are all forms of consuming.

Firstly, majority of us consume too much, just too much. But librarians are not smart or rich!

Idea is to consume the right stuff. It is to consume something which will help you reach towards your goals.

Consume biographies, consume awesome posts by great bloggers.

Secondly we consume mostly entertainment and not educative stuff.

We love watching Cricket, our favourite comedy shows, and reality TV. These things provide immediate pleasure or gratification but don’t provide any long term value.

I am not asking you to cut out completely on entertainment, limit it to 10-20% of the things that you consume.

And Lastly communicate: God has given us 2 ears and one mouth. HE wants us to speak less and listen more. In this age of wats up and Facebook, there is too much noise and mindless chatter going on! Just too many opinions about anyone and everyone!

My advice: Talk less, listen more and do more:)

5) Do something important: Before venturing into Tesla, SpaceX Elon Musk knew his odds to succeed were very less.

To this one interviewer asked him why did he still went ahead with it? His answer: “Coz its important and is the right thing to do”

6) Measure how much time you waste everyday, and then aim to reduce it: Watching TV, gossiping over the phone, chilling with friends, late night-outs, spending excessive time on Facebook are all time wasters and usually don’t provide any educative value. First step is to become aware about how much you are actually wasting on these activities everyday, every week. Then aim to reduce by 10% and then by 20% and then move upto 50%.

Just imagine the awesome things you can do with these many hours saved: like spending more time with your family, starting a blog part time along side your job, devoting more time to your hobby and so on and so forth.

7) Walk and burn: Do yourself a favour and buy a fitness band.

And set the target to 10,000 steps daily. This will help you burn roughly 500 calories daily which is equivalent to 3500 calories in a week or 1 lbs of fat loss a week, or 4 lbs a month, or 48lbs a year (21.8kg). Most of you don’t even need to lose this much in the first place!

8) Lift heavy weights: Weight training is concentrated work! Working out just few hours a week can provide you with immense benefits. Learn more.

9) Wake up early: Sure some people do their best work between 11pm to 3am. I was one of them long time back, until I become a morning person. I realised I am much more alert working early mornings. Usually after an undisturbed night sleep I can really focus and focus hard.

Whereas working at night was always erratic. Usually something or the other used to come up. Friends birthdays, family get togethers, movie etc. Majority of people in this world are asleep from 5am to 7am. You can do your best work at this time.

10) Build a routine that works for you: Will power is not enough. You plan 10 things the night before. You are all charged up and promise yourself that you will accomplish all the things in the list. What happens the next day? You snoozed and as a result you lost few hours of your precious time. You start to feel guilty and the whole day spirals downwards!

Don’t feel like writing, sit down, open your Mac and start typing. A rough draft is better than an empty page

Don’t feel like going to the gym. Stop your thinking, wear your shoes and just go. Once you are at the gym, you’ll be glad you came.

Successful people build routines, and not will power.

11) Start a stop watch before every task: Oh this one really works! When I know the clock is ticking, I am way more focussed.

12) Divide your day into small chunks: I don’t enjoy F1 races much! But what I have learned by watching is that the team who wins is the team who takes timely strategic pit stops! In the long run what really matters is that you have the right amount of fuel in the gas tank, your tires are not worn out too much etc.

The same can be applied to your work. I personally can focus intensely for 25 to 30 minutes. After which my mind and my body asks for break. Usually when I am excited or with my team I override that signal and make myself a cup of coffee and keep working! Not wise! After sometime my body starts to release stress hormones like cortisol, adrenaline etc. This makes me anxious and jittery!

In order to work smarter, what I can do is to take a break after a period of intense work:

  • The break should be no more 5 to 10 minutes after 25 min of work
  • and 15 to 20 minutes is ok if you work for 45 to 50 minutes
  • During the break don’t check Facebook or chat with your friends.
  • Instead do these things: Go for a walk and take deep breathes simultaneously
  • Mediate
  • Listen to great music
  • Take a power nap

There’s an app for that: iOS – Be Focused by Denys Yevenkoy

Android – ClearFocus by ClearApps.xyz

13) First things first: Now, I am of the notion that if it has to happen, it has to happen FIRST. You see we have limited will power. Roy Baumeister’s experiment proves this fact.

If you complete all your important task before noon ( exercise being at the top of the list ) , chances are very high that they will get done!

14) Do Less: Less is more. Less is productive. 20% of the things you do will give you 80% of the results. Those 20% of thing are hard to do. Usually we try to avoid them! And choose to stay in our comfort zone. Majority of us are busy, but not productive.

15) Keep asking this important question: Is this the best use of my time? If the answer is “No”, then probably it is. Re-assess and stratagize. Figure what are things that you should be doing instead.

16) Plan Plan Plan: Abraham Lincoln said: ” If I have nine hours to chop a tree, I would sharpen my axe for 6 hours and cut the tree for 3 hours! Always plan the next day the night before! This habit has helped me saved me tons of time! Plan every hour , every minute. Its ok if things don’t go according to your plan. Just improvise:)

17) Reserve Sundays for Weekly Planning: Measure, analyse, progress. How can you improve on something that you don’t know? Keep a document detailing how you spending every hour of the day! I know it may seem like a big task initially, but over time, it builds into a solid habit. This way you have a clear idea where your spending your time.

Every Sunday you can take a look at the various things you have accomplished. You can then work towards improving.

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