Healthy Living

The 3 Essentials of How to Encourage Good Dental Health in Children

Did you know that your child should go to his first dental checkup when his or her first tooth appears? Want a little more beyond this bit of helpful advice from America’s Pediatric Dentists? Here are the 3 essentials every parent should master to make sure your child grows up knowing how to care for his or her teeth.

Children dental health

1. Portray the right attitude toward dental visits.

Children pick up on their parents’ emotions. And for many of us, visiting a dentist is not high on our list of favorite activities. Unfortunately, such feelings can be unconsciously relayed to our children. This dentist in Wasilla offers the following advice, “Your child will pick up on your feelings about the appointment. Try to keep your tone upbeat and casual. Don’t give them anything to worry about.”

Parents can often unconsciously do this by using words and phrases that are meant to reassure but can instead inspire fear. For example, statements like, “It won’t hurt.” Or “It will be over quickly.” These types of phrases can turn a neutral experience into one to dread. An overt amount of focus on the event can cause your child to sense that something is wrong. Instead, present the event as an opportunity to spend time together. And use the dental appointment as an opportunity for you to have some quality time with your child.

2. Show that oral hygiene goes beyond teeth brushing.

Educating your child about how cavities are formed is essential for their dental health. If you are hazy on the details of behaviors that can further hurt one’s oral health, then start with learning as much as you can about it. Get rid of dental hygiene myths that are no longer valid. And think about what you do beyond brushing that could be hurting the health of your teeth and gums.

Here are a few suggestions that are a good place to start in your oral hygiene education.

  • Replace your and your child’s toothbrush every 3 to 4 months. If you think you will forget, set a calendar reminder for 3 months into the future each time you purchase toothbrushes for your family.
  • Avoid serving fizzy drinks to your family. Fizzy drinks contain citric acid and phosphoric acid, both of which can eat away at your teeth’s surface.
  • Have your children rinse or brush their teeth after eating any food or snack. Sugar is one of the leading culprits of tooth decay.
  • Beware of foods that put teeth at higher risk of cavities. Certain foods and drinks cling to your teeth and thus are more likely to cause cavities than other foods. Foods to watch for include honey, sugar, cookies, ice cream, and chips.

3. Establish a fun routine around your child’s oral care.

Having routines can help us enjoy even mundane tasks. Play an upbeat song as you brush your child’s teeth, and keep on brushing until the song ends. This ensures that sufficient time is given to teeth cleaning and can help firmly establish good oral hygiene. Other ways to create fun routines around morning and night time teeth brushing times include:

  • Make it a united event. Brush your own teeth when your children are brushing theirs. Engaging in the same activity together with your offspring can be an important time of non-verbal connection.
  • Use the time thoughtfully. When your child is brushing his or her teeth, use that time to comment on areas they are doing well in at school.

Of course, you may not always be able to be present when your child is brushing his or her teeth. But when they first start off, it’s important to nurture the habit with positive reinforcement. This will help your child have good associations when it comes to teeth brushing time. Research ways to make oral hygiene fun!

Helping your child establish good habits around their oral care happens one day at a time. If you have not focused on this aspect of your child’s health, don’t worry that it is too late. Start now, and make it a priority. Talk to your partner about it, and carve out time in your day to have conversations about oral health with your children. Be there as they brush their teeth so that they can see the importance you are giving it. They will pick up your desire to see improvement in this area and will internalize that.

Healthy Living, Holiday Gift Guide 2017, Parenting

How We Helped Our Son’s Dentist Anxiety

Touchpoints has partnered with me on this story

How We Helped Our Son's Dentist Anxiety

Anthony’s Story: How We Helped Our Son’s Dentist Anxiety

Anthony is 9. He hasn’t always had doctor and dentist anxiety until about 3 years ago. He has a very crowded mouth and overbite. One day he came to me saying his tooth hurt and I saw his gums looked angry so I drove him into the Dentist. He hopped up on the table and come to find out the tooth is literally breaking apart and needs to come out due to overcrowding pushing on and destroying the tooth. They sent us home with an Antibiotic and told us to come back in the morning for tooth extraction.

That next morning his cheek was so swollen and that tooth was angry. They gave him novocaine and felt he needed a bit more. Well, let’s just say that tooth had gotten so angry we realized after a blood curling scream that the Novocaine couldn’t make its way past the infection. The tooth was out but he felt that. That was the day he lost trust in Doctors and Dentists and the anxiety over “what if pain” started.

The next month was his flu shot. They announced it was coming like all others in the past he would cringe about only this time he lost it. 3 nurses later, a kick to the Dr’s chest in the struggle and screams that could clear a building we stabbed him and he was vaccinated. Wow! At one point they asked if we should just reschedule but I really felt giving in would not make the ‘next time’ any better. He does not have low pain tolerance, he just has anxiety about the anticipation of pain. Two totally different anxieties. How do We Help Our Son’s Dentist Anxiety?

Over the past year I took a break on Dentist and Doctors and hoped this year would bring an older, changed Anthony. Wrong! This year we started Ortho. He made it through a cleaning, we moved and the Dentist we go to is his Aunt’s office so due to possible embarrassment by his cousins he sucked it up. The referral to the Ortho and the appointment to put on his expander was a whole different story. The 20 minute appointment took 1 hour and 15 minutes. Why?

He refused to lay down. He needed to know the exact plan, touch the device, see the tools they will use, give him a blueprint for this visit, etc. 3 techs later one gal finally did great with him and began asking him questions-like taking the control of asking questions away from him. He began to trust her and it took careful talk but he was finally laying on the chair, hands away from his mouth allowing her to put it in ONLY because he needed her to be precise about her every move. I regretted one thing that day…not charging our Touchpoints!

How Touchpoints reversed his behavior

In NYC this summer I met with the Touchpoints crew and was sent a pair of Touchpoints to try. This was my piece of heaven coming to the rescue. I knew right away this could help Anthony with his dentist anxiety as well as at the Doctors office. Only what I soon realized is it did so much more.

Touchpoints are best explained in the video below:

For Anthony’s follow up visit we had to turn his expander and then after watching them turn we were instructed to do so at home nightly for 21 nights. He was a champ. With Touchpoints charged I sat in the car a moment to get him into the right mindset. He had Touchpoints in his pocket and we practiced some self-talk. I also had a toy prize for him he got to see IF he could make it through. There was no pain involved with this follow up but his anxieties started anyways the night before. The office was almost in tiptoe mode with him yet played it well. I could sense they had that same bit of anxiety I was also having about ‘what if he..”.

He asked if he could ask 1 question-“what will this feel like?” The Orthodontit who came to him first tickled his nose and said “like that”. Then the cutest thing happened…he said “OK!” and lay down. Only his ‘OK’ was a high-pitched squeal, hence his nerves totally showing in his attempt to be cool. He allowed her to show me the turn and expressed he felt it a little but “it feels fine”. We turn it every night without struggle at home. Thank you, Touchpoints!

The funny thing! Anthony recently came to me an said, “Mom, Can I have my Touchpoints to help me fall asleep faster?” Why not! The next morning he told me…”all I could focus on was the Touchpoints, Mom and I fell asleep so much faster”. Honestly my thought was , “really?!” Could it be mind over matter? Every night since if he is still awake after so much time he asks for them. It isn’t every night but when he needs them he knows it and he really is asleep in no time! Now for the stressful video game play he expresses! Touchpoints, can you calm him down with his game play frustrations? There is no doubt these will battle that aggression too!

If this story resonates with you, I cannot stress the benefit of Touchpoints enough! From anxieties to sleep and anger it is definitely on for our parenting tool belt that can d wonders for anyone at any age.

Food, Gift Ideas, Giveaways, Healthy Living, Natural Foods

Enjoy NatureBox with Monthly Snack Deliveries – Giveaway

I have partnered with NatureBox and received store credit for feature

Enjoy NatureBox with Monthly Snack Deliveries - Giveaway

How easy is it for you to find healthy snacks that actually taste good? I mean a real healthy-not those foods with tricky labels appearing to be healthy. By healthy I mean real ingredients and nothing artificial added. Snacks that have gluten-free, vegan and non-GMO options and still taste good. Have you found such snacks yet that you enjoy over and over? It’s hard.

Many labeled healthy actually add not-so-healthy sweeteners so they can call them sugar-free and keep that addicting taste. That’s cheating. NatureBox doesn’t cheat…at all and they are constantly adding to their snack list so you can find those healthy snacks you’ll want to eat. Start Here!

What is NatureBox?

It is a monthly club. Different than a subscription service you pay $5 a month is all and when you shop each month that same $5 fee is applied to your purchase or can build for up to a year. So you get your fee back as a regular customer. Shipping is free on orders over $25. We all know we eat more than $25 of snacks and desserts so spending only $25 a month is no real issue.

The Snacks at NatureBox

There are over 100 different snacks and new ones added each month so I cannot feature them all, but I did order one of their top sellers and I now know why it is a top seller. The Probiotic Power Mix is the best trail mix I have ever snacked on. I opened the bag during the Seahawks game this weekend and my husband and I dug in. He kept stealing all of the Greek Yogurt Diced Apricots. I love eating the cashews and pecans.

Trail mixes are not all you will find. Search their jerky, cookies, bars, crackers, meals, popcorn, coffee and more. It is fun to pick a few items each month and always have the snacks ready to pack for healthy morning starts or office munchies you don’t have to feel guilty about. There are typically specials for new members so head over! Shop new arrivals at NatureBox

Giveaway Hop

NatureBox Giveaway

I have partnered with The Kids Did It for this giveaway hop. Once you enter this NatureBox giveaway of mine visit the other blog giveaways below and enter them too!

1 lucky reader of mine will win a Lifetime Membership to NatureBox and a $50 credit to anything in the shop. Open to US and ends on 12/22. Good luck!

Clothing, Healthy Living, Holiday Shopping

Did You Know? Running Facts to Motivate You

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Mizuno. The opinions and text are all mine.

Did You Know? Running Facts to Motivate You

Today we are talking about running. The Holidays are here and many of you may be thinking about New Year Resolutions or after overeating you may be thinking about starting to run or even walk for a healthier start to 2018. I searched many resources along with facts I remember in my own head and I want to share the top ones that stick out to me. Motivation is key to success and hopefully these running facts will make you smile or make you more curious to take an extra step closer to starting a healthier routine.

  • Remember this name, Fauja Singh. He is the oldest marathon runner at 100 years old. He finished a marathon in Toronto in 8 hours, 25 minutes, 16 seconds.
  • I have seen in several readings that running 12-18 miles a week can leaves runners with a stronger immune system and are less prone to colds
  • Over 1 billion pairs of running shoes are sold worldwide every year
  • Like stair climbing? In the Great Wall of China Marathon, runners have to climb 5,164 steps (that’s not for me)
  • South African runner Zola Bud won two IAAF World Cross Country titles while running barefoot
  • The average exercise life of a running shoe is about 400 miles
  • The inside will wear faster then the outside in almost every running shoe (Don’t look at a car tire to judge the heath of a car. It’s the engine inside that can have the most problems) such as in the shoes lining or support system

What running shoe am I wearing now? My latest shoe is the Mizuno Wave Rider 21 running shoe. To me, a shoe that I have to ‘break in’ before I feel comfort is not the best running shoe. Like these Mizuno Wave Rider 21 shoes, they should support from the first time you put them on and that should feel comfortable to you.

Before I even stood up and took my first step in these shoes they were comfortable. I have the High Rise Greystone, but they come in 4 total colors – Patriot Blue-White, Baja Blue-Dazzling Blue and Athena-Siver. The redesigned Wave technology offers softer cushioning. Mizuno’s Dynamotion Fit features a breakthrough in “Triple Zone” engineered mesh for breathability, movement, and hold when it is needed while running.

These shoes are made to run and remain comfortable while offering the support your foot needs. Sounds simple, but it is hard to get style, comfort, support and breathability in one shoe. Some have support but rub and cause discomfort. Some shoes are comfortable until later that day when your feet begin hurting from lack of proper support. Some support and are comfortable but it lacks in style and color choices. Mizuno hit it all in one shoe. Know a runner? Share these with them. They may thank you later!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Mizuno. The opinions and text are all mine.

Healthy Living, Life, Parenting

Have a Family Night In This Season – Tips from DIY Network Host

I have partnered with Yankee Candle for feature

Have a Family Night In This Season - Tips from DIY Network Host

It gets so busy over the holidays. We are in all directions and the kids are out of school for a few weeks so we may have to adjust our schedule or find nannies and daycares so they can be watched during the day. It is just as hectic for the kids as it us. It is important to find a few nights over the Holidays to keep yours and the kids schedule empty. Have a night in as a family.

Jason Cameron

DIY Network host and Pine Mountain spokesperson Jason Cameron, has put together a go-to checklist for all of us!

  • Make a festive snack – Everyone loves making sugar cookies and gingerbread, but the best part is eating your creations! While snacking on cookies, wash it down with some hot chocolate or warm apple cider.



  • Watch a holiday movie – From Frosty the Snowman to Elf, we all have a favorite holiday movie. These movies provide a sense of nostalgia for adults, and offer hours of entertainment for kids.


  • Decorate your home – Setting up holiday decorations in your home is a tradition that many families across the country have. Play some light music in the background and chat about your favorite holiday memories to make the activity more festive.

As mentioned above, there is a seasonal scented Balsam Fir Firelog by Yankee Candle from American home that leaves a pleasant scent that is easy to light and burns clean. Pick one up for your night in this season.

Healthy Living, Parenting

3 Reasons All Parents Should Try Yoga

Photo Source: Pexels

When it comes to finding the time to exercise, the demands of parenting mean that most parents find themselves struggling. We all know the benefits of exercise, but that doesn’t mean we can make the space in busy schedules to complete the exercise that we need.

The above is just the first reason that yoga is so attractive to parents. With yoga, there’s no need to visit a gym; if you’ve got a spare square meter in your house, then you’re good to go. Yoga is the kind of exercise that you can fit in anywhere, at any time, making it ideal for busy parents. Additionally, this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to establishing a yoga routine as a parent; there are plenty of other reasons yoga is the perfect parenting exercise choice.

1) Yoga Is Inherently Calming

As well as the physical benefits, one of the benefits that yoga can offer is an opportunity to center yourself and find a little calm. As a parent, you’re likely always on the go, running to catch up with yourself and the tasks you need to accomplish. Yoga gives you the chance to breathe, take a moment, and inject a little calm into your day.

2) Yoga Allows You To Futureproof Yourself

At the present time, you might not be overly concerned with conditions such as back pain or osteoporosis. We all tend to think of these issues as a matter for “old” people, but there’s no time like the present when it comes to ensuring your health for the future– for the sake of your kids, and what you’re able to do with them, as well as yourself. Yoga offers myriad benefits that will keep you supple and strong in later life. Intensive, standing yoga contains plenty of effective osteoporosis exercises and lumbago-busting movements that will keep you feeling fit and spry for as long as possible; develop the habit now and you’ll be well set for your golden years.

3) Yoga Is Simple

The simplicity of yoga is one of its main draws, allowing yoga to slot into your existing schedule without a long learning process. You can take classes if you wish, but for the most part, a beginner’s YouTube video is all you need to get started. If you’ve never practiced yoga before, then entry-level videos are a perfect way to introduce yourself to the pursuit. Here’s one to get you started.

In Conclusion

Yoga not only fits into the busy parenting schedule, but also gives you the opportunity to improve your body in ways that will benefit you for years to come. It is the perfect discipline for busy, time-poor parents who don’t have the availability in their schedule for long, demanding gym workouts; parents who need to find methods of exercising that don’t compromise their desire to be there for their kids. Along with a healthy diet, yoga can improve your life in a variety of different ways, so why not give it a try and see what it can do for you?