We really cannot give Moms enough credit, gratitude, and thanks for all they do and all they continue to guide us in. After the whirlwind that was 2020, the world is slowly, slowly, starting to open back up. Personally, this Mother’s Day should be one to remember. During the past year, things have been scary and full of uncertainty. Not only have parents had to juggle home, work, and everything else that they do on any typical day, throw in a Pandemic and things became overwhelming for most.
Since we can go out to places a little bit more (comfort level taken into account), Moms should be CELEBRATED more than ever this year. Here’s 5 last-minute ideas to help you plan a special day for those fabulous ladies in your life:
Pack a picnic basket and include a deck of cards or board game. Enjoy a break outdoors at a park, in the backyard, or on the living room floor. Alternatively, take her out for breakfast, lunch, or dinner at her favorite local spot. Remember to spring for her favorite dessert!
Select a nice bottle of antioxidant-rich red wine. Pro Tip: avoid red wine teeth stains by brushing before popping the cork AND eat cheese. Aged gouda or cheddar are safe choices for most reds.
Pick up her most favorite bouquet of flowers. Is she not into flowers? A special plant for her garden or a small succulent (read: very low maintenance) are also perfect.
Find that perfect card that expresses exactly what your Mother means to you OR make your own! Kids of all ages are never too old to make a homemade card for their mom.
Create a personalized gift basket just for her! Candles, candy, pajamas, sandals, frame with a picture of you two, portable water flosser, dvd, even gift cards. The beautiful thing about gift baskets, is you get to choose the perfect items that remind you of her. Themed or random, she’ll appreciate that each item was thoughtfully selected by you.
Let us know how it goes, and of course, Happy Mother’s Day to all the Moms out there (and the dads doing double duty). You are doing GREAT!
If you’re celebrating this year with a traditional Easter or still hunkering down with a virtual celebration, we have some egg-citing ideas to brighten your weekend!
Healthy Easter Basket Ideas & Gifts
5 Clever Gift Ideas for Easter:
Electric Toothbrush. From superheroes and princesses to tech-savvy Bluetooth compatible, electric toothbrushes are great for kids and adults of all ages! PRO TIP: electric toothbrushes, when compared to ordinary manual toothbrushes, decrease more plaque.
Floss or Flossers. Not all dental floss is created equal! There’s unwaxed floss to fit between teeth that are very close together. Waxed floss is the standard and least likely to break. Dental tape is broad and flat, yet also comes in waxed and unwaxed options. This is the perfect option for those with more space between teeth. Can’t get your family to floss? Gift them a water flosser and stay out of the splash zone!
Lip Balm. From kid-friendly fruity flavors to bacon balm and all-natural beeswax, be sure to surprise your bunnies with an option that moisturizes and includes SPF.
Dental Hygiene Survival Kit a.k.a Travel Kit. These are easy to find at Walmart, Target, and discount stores. They’re also fun to make and personalize! Be sure to include a small toothbrush that has a cover over the bristles, toothpaste with fluoride, floss or flossers, dental wax if they have braces, and pop them into a little, fun travel case.
Water Bottle. The more personalized to what they’re into, the more they’ll love to hydrate! Not sure what they’ll like? Solid color with a secure top is always a safe bet. Then boost the fun with permanent markers or stickers so they can decorate to their heart’s content.
Fun Easter Crafts & Games
Classic Easter Egg Hunt: If everyone is safe and able, create the most epic egg hunt ever! From real confetti eggs to plastic ones, fill them with candies, small toys, and surprise money.
Virtual Egg Hunting: How does this work?? So glad you asked! It’s on Zoom or FaceTime or Google Duo, whichever your friends and family like best. Each family hides the same number of eggs in a room. If the kids are smaller, this is a fun I-Spy game. You’ll want to keep the eggs semi-hidden yet easily spotted from where your camera will be set up. For older kids and adults, you can step up the camouflage game and hide them completely. Be sure to make clues. To keep the game fun (and fair if necessary): set a timer for everyone to have equal time. The family that finds the most eggs wins. Victory dances and showcasing each egg found Vanna White style is highly encouraged!
Scavenger Hunt: If you feel like going a little above your average egg hunt, take it to the next level with a scavenger hunt! Create clues and a map that leads to the prizes (or eggs) throughout your home and/or backyard. Here’s a few ideas for all ages: decorate an egg, peep like a chick, smell a flower, find a plastic egg. From clue cards to do-it lists, scavenger hunts are a great way to get everyone involved.
Egg Decorating Contest: This is a great option for Zoom as well! Everyone sets up their egg decorating stations and camera. Then you can all chat and visit with one another while decorating fancy Easter eggs. In the end, everyone can vote on their favorites.
Easy Easter Food
Deviled Eggs: Classic! Use your favorite deviled egg recipe. Make them fancy by using a fun cake piping tip to pipe the egg mixture into the sliced egg whites and top with a paprika sprinkle for a pop of color! If you are feeling ambitious, transform them into little chicks using small pieces of black olive for eyes and carrot shavings as a beak.
Cherry Coke Ham: Sure to be an instant favorite! Before putting your ham into the oven, pour cherry coke over the ham and rub it with brown sugar. Repeat this process 2 more times while the ham cooks. Depending on how large your ham is, it usually times out to be repeated every 45 minutes to an hour. Pro Tip: leftovers are amazing with yellow mustard on Hawaiian rolls… DELICIOUS!
Twinkie Mobiles: Take a Twinkie. Laying the Twinkie flat side down, carve out some of the fillings from the middle. This will serve as the “car”. Next, take a bunny Peep, trim a little from the bottom, and stick the bunny into the area carved out of the Twinkie. The Peep is your “driver”. Use mini cream-filled cookies (like mini-Oreos), twist off the cookie part, stick one side of the cookie to the Twinkie (using frosting) to create the “wheels” of the car. Finally, use pretzels (chocolate covered are also wonderful) and place this in front of the Peep for the “steering wheel”!
Robbins Egg Rice Krispies Baskets: Whip up a batch of home-made Rice Krispies treats. While they are still warm, mold them into cupcake trays so that they resemble bird nests. Let them cool completely. Put down a little layer of the edible Easter grass (or make your own using coconut flakes mixed with a little green food coloring). Fill with your favorite egg-shaped candies, such as the colorful malted Robbins eggs, or pastel multi-colored mini-M&Ms.
Chocolate Covered Strawberries: Put an Easter spin on chocolate covered strawberries. Use white chocolate and add some orange food coloring so that the dipped strawberry now looks like a carrot!
Hope you decide to try out some of these “EGG-STRA” special ideas for a “HOPIN” good time! Whatever you decide to do this year, have fun, be safe, get creative, share your pics with us, and Happy Easter!
It’s officially March 2021, and one of the lesser-known impacts brought on by the pandemic is the rise of tooth fractures. Our dental practice would normally see a small number of fractures from ice chewing or biting into a rogue popcorn kernel; however, that is no longer the case. As more people than ever before working from their sofas and hastily thrown together home offices, ergonomics has gone out the window. A large part of ergonomics in the workplace revolves around posture, which plays heavily into stress induced tooth fractures and other jaw-related issues such as TMJ.
While broken bones can heal, it is important to note that a tooth fracture never will. The cure, rather treatment, will depend on the severity of the crack and location. This is why an early diagnosis can be essential to saving your tooth. Treatment can be as simple as a crown or require a root canal if the fracture is below the gum line. As with all dental issues, avoiding treatment as things progressively worsen and can lead to tooth loss.
Now, let us revisit posture. The average person tends to not consider their posture and how it deeply affects their bodies and overall long-term health. Having poor posture places stress on your muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Practicing good posture is one of the simplest and easiest ways to keep the spine healthy and improve blood flow. Most people sit slumped, curve their spine, lean forward on the edge of their seat, or sit leaning more to the left or right. All these positions can affect our spine, neck, nerves, and shoulder muscles which can all translate into possible TMJ problems!
Ever wonder the kind of effect stress can have on the body and everyday life? It is another factor that negatively impacts our bodies. Chronic stress is also linked to the six leading causes of death (heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver, and suicide). Of course, stress is probably on the top of everyone’s lists, along with poor sleeping habits. These two things combined, cause us to clench our jaw and grind our teeth at night while sleeping. Clenching and grinding of the teeth and jaws contribute greatly to tooth fractures, chipped teeth, and wearing down the surfaces of your teeth (short teeth). All of which is an obvious reason to schedule a dental visit.
It is important to be mindful of these things, at least as much as we can. Let us all try to make sure that we check-in with ourselves by asking daily:
How have I been feeling?
Am I anxious about anything particular?
What am I stressing about?
Have I been sleeping well?
The first step is at least being aware. If we can catch ourselves when we are stressing, we can prevent those long-term issues that creep up on us down the road. For example, sometimes we notice our fists are clenched. Maybe not because we are angry, but because that is where our stress accumulates. Our stress can also accumulate while we are sleeping. You see, stress comes out in different ways and often unconsciously. After thinking about all these factors, realization hits and we start thinking about all the things that we can do to improve ourselves and our health. We do find ourselves in a constant state of stress, even if nothing major is going on, there is constantly something on our mind. Our health is finite and requires regular attention and maintenance. Be mindful of what your body is saying to you and take action.
Taking action is as easy as catching ourselves slumped in front of our computers rather than sitting upright with our feet on the floor. There are loads of options on Amazon designed to help reinforce healthy posture. For your workspace, be sure your computer monitors are at eye level, and your keyboard and mouse accessible while your arms are at a 90-degree angle. This should allow your elbows and forearms to rest on the arms of your chair.
Try and get relaxed before going to bed. Stop thinking about work. Stop thinking about what we did and did not get accomplished. Try taking a bath or hot shower. Unwind. Drink some chamomile tea. Anything to put you in a calm state-of-mind before dozing off. And, if you have trouble falling asleep, focus on clearing your mind and concentrate on breathing deeply.
If you are a teeth grinder or a jaw clencher, ask us about a mouthguard or sleep options to help prevent grinding and ease those achy jaws from clenching.
We know this will not solve a pandemic, but it will help to avoid a nasty dental visit, TMJ problems, or having to repair fractured or chipped teeth!