Tuesday, February 27, 2018
If you feel great, a smile comes naturally. It's an outward sign of joy, amusement, or excitement. Obviously, it is not natural to smile when we're sad or upset; but it turns out that smiling might be the best thing to do when you're ready to shift into a brighter mood. And it's not just for you; each time you smile at a person, their brain coaxes them to return the favour. You are creating a reciprocal relationship that allows both of you to release 'feel good' chemicals in your brain (endorphins) , activate the reward centres, increase attractiveness and the chances of living longer, healthier lives.
Scientists have found that smiling on purpose can help people feel better. Just the simple act of putting a smile on your face can lead you to feel actual happiness. Smiling on purpose changes brain chemistry.
More serious problems including depression require more than just putting on a smile, and should be discussed with your doctor. But when you are simply looking to improve your mood, smile!
How Smiling Affects Your Brain
Each time you smile you throw a little feel-good party in your brain. The act of smiling activates neural messaging that benefits your health and happiness.
For starters, smiling activates the release of neuropeptides that work towards fighting off stress. The feel good neurotransmitters dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin are also released when a smile flashes across your face. This not only relaxes your body, but it can lower your heart rate and blood pressure.
How Smiling Affects Your Brain
You are actually better looking when you smile - and we're not just trying to butter you up. When you smile, people treat you differently. You're viewed as more attractive, reliable, relaxed, and sincere. A study published in the journal Neuropsychologia reported that seeing an attractive smiling face activates your orbitofrontal cortex, the region in your brain that processes sensory rewards. This suggests that when you view a person smiling, you actually feel rewarded. (How does this affect the body though?)
How Smiling Affects Those Around You
Did you know that your smile is actually contagious? The part of your brain that is responsible for your facial expression of smiling when happy or mimicking another's smile resides in the cingulate cortex, an unconscious automatic response area. In a Swedish study, subjects were shown pictures of several emotions: joy, anger, fear and surprise. When the picture of someone smiling was presented, the researchers asked the subjects to frown. Instead, they found that the facial expressions went directly to imitation of what subjects saw. It took conscious effort to turn their smile upside down. So if you're smiling at someone, it's likely they can't help but smile back. If they don't, they're making a conscious effort not to.
So, the next time someone tells you to "cheer up" when you're in a low mood, own it. Your happiness might end up making that person feel happier too. It's shared!
Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Good oral care is important at any age. However certain segments of the population require help with their oral hygiene care, including elderly, sick and mentally or physically challenged. Studies have shown that many family members are taking on the role of a primary care giver and oral hygiene should be another important area of focus to consider for any caregiver.
Brushing and flossing are crucial activities that effect general health just as much as medications, proper diet and physical activity. Seeing a dental hygienist regularly aid in the process of general well being, and should be a part of everyone's regular routine.
When providing care to an individual with needs certain signs should be observed for inadequate oral care:
- Food debris
- Weight loss
- Chronic bad breath
- Red, swollen, bleeding tender gums
- Loose teeth/ tooth pain
- Abscess or pus around gums or teeth
- Brushing and or cleaning the mouth twice daily for two minutes
- Remove and brush dentures twice daily or more if needed
- Floss teeth at least daily
- Brushing or scraping tongue
- Booking regular dental hygiene/ dental visits.
Tuesday, January 30, 2018
As with any good habit, instilling it early and with consistency is the best way to be sure that your child practices good oral hygiene. Teaching them when to brush, how long to brush and how much toothpaste to use, is very important. They may not be wise enough to know what this will do for their overall health in the long run, but you are, and if they see that this is something that mommy and daddy not only approve of, but celebrate, little minds will associate brushing their teeth with a positive outcome.
Make it a routine
One way to be sure that they don’t see it as a cumbersome chore is to make it fun. Have them brush until you count to a certain number or finish their favorite song or nursery rhyme. Reward them for a job well done. Similar to the famous “potty chart,” you can give them a star for each time they brush their teeth. Let the sticker - itself be a reward or perhaps take them to get a new toy when they’ve filled up their chart. Your Newmarket family dentist wants your child to develop good habits from the start so they’ll always have a beautiful smile.
Stave off a sweet tooth
It’s well-known that sugar and tooth decay are partners in crime, so be sure your child is eating a balanced diet of fruits, veggies, grains and proteins, limiting the amount of starches and sugars they eat. When sugar remains in the mouth, it becomes a breeding ground for bacteria, which can lead to tooth decay and gum disease. And while they may just be their baby teeth, those little guys are the foundation for adult teeth and proper care for baby teeth is absolutely essential.
Stop on by
Just as you should see your dentist every six months, so should your children. From the time they cut their first tooth, on, you should be bringing your child into Dr. Ian Gray twice a year, unless we request more frequent visits.
Caring for your child’s chompers is just as important as caring for your own. Be sure they get a good, healthy start to regular oral care by visiting your Newmarket dental office, Dr. Ian Gray, today.
Tuesday, January 23, 2018
What do you do?
We have five different snack ideas that are not only tasty, but help prevent cavities too!
- Seeds/Nuts (especially on top of yogurt or salads)
- Rich in both calcium and/or phosphorous, yet low in sugar
- Helps to rebuild and protect tooth enamel
- Try snacking on nuts like: almonds, walnuts, cashews, Brazil nuts
- For those with nut allergies: sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds
- Kale chips
- High in calcium to strengthen teeth
- Contains folate: a B vitamin that helps promote a healthy mouth, both inside and out
- Other leafy greens include: broccoli, spinach, collard greens, bok choy, okra
- Celery with hummus, or with peanut butter topped with raisins
- Chewing this firm vegetable promotes more saliva; saliva neutralizes cavity causing bacteria
- Abrasive substance that naturally cleans teeth of plaque and other food particles
- Also try other crunchy veggies like: carrots, cucumbers, cauliflower
- Apples (raw or dried apples)
- Contains many beneficial nutrients and vitamins; apples are high in fiber and water
- Similar characteristics to celery (abrasive and crunchy), and a good alternative if you can't brush and/or floss right after meals
- Leaving cut apple slices out overnight removes most of the water, but you won't have to worry about any preservatives or added sugar
- Frozen grapes
- Rich in antioxidants to fight bacterial growth
- Low levels of starch prevent bacterial infections (less acidic environment)
- A good source of vitamin C: a vitamin essential for protecting teeth and gum cells
Evidently, the most ideal foods contain high levels of vitamins, calcium and/or phosphorus. All of these nutrients strengthen your teeth, reduce the potential for tooth decay, and fight against cavity-causing bacteria. Although these snacks help to prevent and minimize cavities, they do not eliminate them; to further avoid cavities, it is crucial to continue practicing good oral hygiene.
Monday, January 15, 2018
Nothing beats the comfort of a warm and filling bowl of soup on a cold, snowy day. Here's a simple and delicious comfort soup recipe for you and your family to enjoy.
Prep Time: 20 mins
Total Cooking Time: 40 mins
Recipe courtesy: All Recipes