The dental hygiene challenge

As some of you might know, I struggle with brushing my teeth. For me it negatively affects my self-image deeply.
And I know there are a lot of people who struggle with it, but it’s a big taboo.
So I want to invite everybody to join me in this challenge. And any advice from people who struggled with it, but don’t anymore is greatly appreciated!
Everyone can determine for themselves how they will do this challenge. There’s no right or wrong, as long as you are happy with the improvement!
And replying in this topic isn’t a requirement either as I know it’s hard to announce to the world that you struggle with dental hygiene.
I hope this will motivate people to take action and to help them know that they are not alone.
Struggling with dental care does not make you incompetent! There is no shame in it. But there’s a lot of pride when you successfully manage to do it despite your struggle!

For me, the challenge will be brushing my teeth everyday for at least 95/100 days.
Why not always?
Sometimes situations will arise where it’s past 3am when I go to bed. At such moments I will have a great struggle brushing my teeth. If I don’t give myself a margin, I will go fuck it mode and that will lead to me brushing my teeth once or twice each hundred days.
Why only in the evening?
For me this is a massive step. It’s a more than 50 time increase in how much I brush my teeth. I could strive for perfection, but setting too big expectations will lead to disappointment. And, obviously, I don’t want that.
What counts as brushing my teeth?
My goal is flossing, then brushing my teeth and tongue, and finishing it with mouthwash. But the absolute requirement is brushing my teeth for 2 minutes.

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I like this! I will join you!!

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I’m with you Jan!

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I’m with you.
I will floss nightly, brush morning and night and use mouthwash.

:upside_down_face:

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This is a great challenge! For me I don’t personally struggle with brushing my teeth but I do find it super boring. I usually stream something on my phone, something from Netflix or Disney Plus, etc etc. That was I am watching something while I’m cleaning, and it gives my mind something to think about :innocent:

Brushing teeth (and good oral health in general) makes a huge difference. It has a significant measurable impact on many areas of the body that maybe you don’t think are connected to the mouth (for example, your nerves and your blood), and it also has impacts on neurological and social things like learning, social interaction, and employment:

This is an awesome challenge. Good work guys!

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Welcome back Jan !

No issues with it here, three times a day. I’ll make it my challenge to do it mindfully instead of bored.

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Just as a side note… Have you ever tried brushing your teeth in the shower?

I brush during my morning shower!

It’s the evening brush which I sometimes get lazy over! So I need to up my game… and with flossing! I need to do that more frequently

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Good on you Jan! I’m cheering from the sideline! :hugs:

You probably have thought of different ways of going about this. I know your daily schedule fluctuates. Is brushing/ not bruising teeth part of your “right before bed” routine? If I’m up at 3AM, brushing teeth is the last thing I could be bothered with. What if instead you brushed your teeth at a certain time in the evening? You know, something like “at 10PM” or “right after supper”? I used to get bored while brushing, too, so I would wander around the house. Idk, just throwing ideas out there :slightly_smiling_face:

I’m very proud of you for taking on this challenge!

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I’ll join in for support.
My goal is flossing. I brush each morning and before bed but flossing I’m not as good about doing with both brushing sessions.

@Badger has a great idea! I thought I was the only one lol I used to brush in the shower at night

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I brush AND floss twice daily, plus I chew a lot of gum. My dentist is always very happy with me, and I am happy that I don’t spend much time in the chair. Have a couple of crowns from breaking a molar on popcorn or a piece of bone in a burger, but never have cavities.

Dental hygiene affects more than just your mouth and self-confidence. Gum and tooth disease can be bad for your liver, kidneys and other internal organs.

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@Nordique welcome to the challenge! What will your goal be?

@Badger good to have you on the team! I have never even thought about brushing in the shower. Interesting concept though. I don’t shower daily, but every two to three days. So if I like it, that will still help me 33-50% of the time. Which is a great improvement!

@mx_elle C’est une goal fantastique! Keep us updated on how it goes!

@Matt finding something to distract myself/reward myself whilst brushing is a good idea. Making it attractive should be very beneficial.

@Fargesia thanks! It’s good to be back after my overreacting tantrum :sweat_smile: Becoming mindful sounds like a solid plan! What advantages do you expect off mindful brushing?

@Olivia couldn’t ask for a better cheerleader :smiley:
I could indeed brush my teeth at 10pm, but I like eating after 10pm also, so that would undo the effects of brushing. On the other hand, it trumps not brushing :thinking:

@Runningfree flossing both times should be very beneficial, I hope you see results soon!

@Yoda-Stevie chewing gum is a pretty good idea! And knowing not brushing affects more than just teeth is quite motivational!

Day 1: 0%
I did not brush last night. I was doing homework until 2 am and I was exhausted… I will nonetheless count yesterday as day 1. Meaning that if I skip brushing 4 more times in the next 99 days, I will have failed.
But with Olivia’s advice about brushing at a set time, I should be able to prevent a lot of similar situations.

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you answered me in French! Such a class act, thank you.
I’m very grateful to you for kicking this off, I need this myself.

My whole family is with you too :slight_smile: (edit, as in they dont know you, but i proposed we do a teeth brushing plan).

Also @Crazy_Dutchie , because you were exhausted at 2 am, this prevented you from brushing? The tiredness, or is there another resistance?

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Mine will be to make sure I don’t skip brushing my teeth by making up excuses about being too tired or it being too late, etc. and to do it twice a day!

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I had another idea too… Just brush at anytime, this lady used to bring a toothbrush to work and brush after lunch! Great idea! Just when you remember… Brush!

I love the shower tooth brushing tho… It gives me an excuse to stay in the water for an extra couple of mins!

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I was exhausted. I almost fell asleep behind my laptop a couple times. But there likely was another resistance.

It’s great to know that this topic benefits you :smiley:
I was really scared this topic would flunk when I was open about a, to me, really embarrassing subject, because of that whole insecurity thingy.
And it’s really great that your family joins in too!

On YouTube my videos would get like 10 views and when I’m posting about poor hygiene I get more than 15 likes :joy:

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How are things today Jan?

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Day 2: 50
Flossed, brushed my teeth and tongue and finished with mouthwash last night :smiley:

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Awesome! :raised_hands:t2:

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This is a great goal for you! I already have great dental hygine, but it is definitely something I worked on over time. My mouth has always been sensitive to the point where I actually bit a dentist when I was a kid, and it was hard enough to draw blood. :sweat_smile: I’ve had two sets of braces (that was a rough journey, let me tell you!) and I currently have permanent retainers on my upper and lower teeth. Flossing has always been the big challenge for me especially with having to deal with braces. I now floss thoroughly everynight, and sometimes during the day if needed.

What works for me is that I set up a little table and a comfortable little stool in my bathroom, and I use the table for my tablet and have specific things I watch/listen to only when I floss. Right now, I’m obsessed with this math channel I found. I can watch the videos as long as I want, but I have to be taking care of my teeth while I do.

My favorite thing is that when I go to the dentist, I get to bask in all the positive comments from the hygienist and the dentist about how well I care for my teeth. It also means my appointments are short, and my teeth cleanings (which I’ve always dreaded because my teeth are plaque magnets) are not as painful as they used to be. I used to forbid the hygienist from flossing my teeth, but I don’t have difficulties now with how strong my gums have become.

Also, finding toothpastes I enjoy has really made the experience much more pleasent. Last year I found a chocolate Toothpaste that I love. It sounds weirder than it actually is. If you can psychologically make the experience something to look forward to, it will help a lot and make the process less of a punishment.

Best of luck to you!

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Day 3 and 4: 75%
Yesterday I was grumpy. I really didn’t want to brush.
So I went to bed without brushing. But after a few minutes I brushed anyway :smiley: including flossing and mouthwash!
This morning when I looked in the mirror I wasn’t repulsed by my teeth :nerd_face: :tada:
Let’s keep this good feeling going!

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