Healthy Mouth Healthy Life

No one really ever thinks about it: our mouths are crawling with bacteria. Granted, not all of the bacteria is bad, it’s nothing to be really scared of if you brush your teeth regularly (a.k.a two-three times a day). But when this bacteria is not nipped in the bud, it can be incredibly detrimental to ones health.

Studies show that when teeth decay from harmful bacteria, it is infinitely easier for this harmful bacteria to enter the bloodstream and cause harmful and often fatal diseases pertaining to the heart and other vital organs in the human body.

SO. In order to help prevent such diseases, I’m providing 10 tips for good oral hygiene that I have found through surfing the internet! I’m only really going to list them, so a visit to the actual website will give a much more in depth description as to why each tip is so important.

  1.  Brush regularlyokay don’t just do one swipe and skip over a few teeth and call it good. BRUSH THEM. a full two minutes is desirable, so aim for that. 
  2. Use a good toothpaste and stick to itone that is recommended is the baking soda toothpaste that has flavoring, baking soda has been proven to be one of the best teeth cleaners around 
  3. Brush your tongue and use a tongue scrapperclears up bad breath and rids your mouth of terrible bacteria that builds of on your tongue
  4. Floss at least once a dayit decreases the bacteria in between your teeth!
  5. Irrigate your teeth!essentially, it gets what flossing and brushing doesn’t
  6. No really– really irrigate your teeth no really. 
  7. Choose a good dentist, and see them on a regular schedule (a.k.a about twice a year)Trust them, they’re professionals. 
  8. White teeth does not  always mean healthy teeth excessive bleaching can be detrimental to your to tooth enamel. 
  9. Watch what you eateating copious amounts of sugar will rot your teeth. Didn’t you ever pay attention to your parents?
  10. Care for your teeth in a timely fashionthey are your only set of teeth. unless you want fake ones. 

Stay healthy my friends 🙂

Dreaming about your Teeth

SOMETHING FUN THIS WEEK!

Dreams. That’s sort of Psychology related, right? And what if the dreams have a little something to do with your teeth… that’s a little bit of both, right??

YES.  At least in my humble opinion, so here we go!

The Dream Dictionary states:

“Teeth dreams can be so vivid and real that we actually think it is happening.  Teeth dreams are usually vivid ones that consist of them missing, pulling, breaking or rotting. The feeling is horrible and can leave us with that thought for weeks.”

UH okay, we definitely have all had this problem before. At least I know that I have for a fact. I remember it like it was yesterday:

  • I was staring into the mirror examining my freshly unbraced teeth, and all of the sudden a small crack appeared. I was nervous but left it alone thinking it would be okay. But then a piece fell, and another,  and another. It was terrifying, I woke up crying and I still think about it today. BUT maybe that’s just me being the dramatic almost-dentist that I am…Okay, now back to dreaming about teeth!

The studies have shown that teeth dreams are more common with adults or people who feel they might be loosing there youth–well I guess getting one’s braces off is some sort of milestone in adolescence, so that explains that one for me!

There are about a billion different kinds of teeth dreams, but I will just hit a few major ones:

  1. Pulling Teeth: These kinds of dreams are the ones that do not symbolize age as much as they do anxiety. They represent feeling as though you are being pushed or pulled (heh.. double meaning) into a certain direction in which you do not wish to go. If you are the one who is pulling out your teeth, it could possibly suggest that you are pulling yourself way too hard and need to slow down. If a doctor is pulling on your teeth in your dream you have overlooked going to your doctor for way too long. Okay, not so sure about that last one but I’ll let it be.
  2. Rotting Teeth: The absolute scariest of nightmares for me. And they’re the most common. BLEH. Rotting means something is going bad and your involved, hence your teeth.  Knowing who was in your dream with your or the location your at can point to a rotting situation.
  3. Falling Teeth: Apparently these ones are common too! Falling teeth points to all of our worries and anxieties that surround us in life and not being in control. So if your a control freak, I’m so sorry, you must have these ones a lot! You could be having this kind of dream for many of reasons, some being *Stressed about your job situation.
    * Fear of being impotent
    * Afraid looking stupid in front of people
    * Stress about looking older/trying to stay young
    * Have you lied to somebody
    * Lacking power at work or relationship.
  4. Crumbling Teeth: My personal favorite. Except not at all. These types of teeth dreams represent our fear of getting old. Dream symbols act as metaphors so when you see your teeth suddenly crumbling it hits at your age and how you perceive yourself. Okay so it’s good to know I’m not actually, physically falling apart!

Hopefully that was a little something enjoyable 🙂

The Online Dentist

So, I was sifting through the internet the other day, doing my usual rounds, when I happen to stumble upon this article called “Montebello Cosmetic Dentist Brings Social Media Sites – Facebook and Twitter – to Practice.” It describes how dentists are now using the internet to further their communication skills with their patients through social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

I find this so interesting because it shows how truly revolutionary the internet has become. These dentists are using social networks to not just appeal to people looking for information on specific services, but they also provide a way for patients to directly interact with the office, something that was not able to happen before social networks. Patients are able to learn about techniques and procedures, as well as see pictures of past procedures, almost as if the patient were in a virtual waiting room. This kind of experience makes it so that the patient gains a level of comfort with certain procedures that they may be looking at before they even make a decision to follow through with said procedure. I love this and believe it is so crucial because patients must 100% be comfortable when they are about to change something in their body because, for the most part, it is permanent, and the pictures and info provided online that sense of comfort.

I very much so enjoyed this article because it was really intriguing. Although a little on the short side, it still gave an appropriate amount of information in order to create an intriguing article on the migration of dentists from office to the online universe.

Headache

I never thought that going to the Chapman Academic Advising Center could be so stressful.

Not that the stress stems directly from Academic Advising, but rather it is a by-product. Life in general is just stressful; they never thought of making it easy did they…

Essentially I walked in, sat down with my advisor, and planned out my classes for the next four years of my life. I enjoy doing this kind of thing because it makes me feel as though I have a specific goal to strive for, and that I already know the path my life is headed down–I’m one of those strange people who love to know the ending of books or movies before I read, or love a spoiled surprise birthday party. All for myself of course, others can enjoy their surprises as they please– But my head was instantly flooded with dark matter, my mind went blank and I just sat staring at this paper with my doe-eyes. I was at a loss mentally, and apparently physically too because my advisor acknowledged my terrified look.  

It’s so funny how, in life, when one little thing does not happen at the correct time, it throws everything off. For example, the main source of stress in this situation:

My chem class. It’s an unfortunate thing when certain classes are only offered in certain terms. Why not just make it easier on everyone and make all classes available at the same time?? Impossible and impractical, I know, but a girl can dream, can’t she? The fact that I didn’t take that class this very first, water-testing, baby-stepping semester, it essentially throws off my whole life. I know have to either find a way to take the class during the summer, ruining some summer plans I had, or be thrown off a whole year dental school wise. SO. ANNOYING. I dislike this whole situation very much, and my head is hurting. And also, on top of that, I am doubling up on science and math pretty much every year, but that was totally self-inflicted. I definitely had that one coming. In fact, I pretty much had this whole situation coming, I was the one who chose to be a pre-dental psych major, i brought this upon myself. I MUST PERSEVERE.

Daisies

You know the saying “slow and steady wins the race”? Well, that’s the road I took when I decided to major in Psychology and pursue dentistry.

I imagine myself just walking along, enjoying the nice road of Psychology, while picking up all my dental pre-reqs slowly along the way, like picking daisies, and each of these daisies get a special treatment and individual attention to make sure that they’re extra beautiful and presentable. Soon enough I have a nice bouquet to offer to a few dental schools, and hope that at least one of them is will to take the beautiful bouquet.

But if I were to be a Bio major, it would not be as nice of a road. It’d be more like a bumpy, scary, woodsy road. I would be walking along, always frantic, and picking up some daisies along the way, along with maybe some poppies or pansies or some other types of flowers. I would have a nice, colorful bouquet, but all these schools really want are the daisies, and these daisies that I have picked on this road may not be as nice as my other daisies, for I may have worked harder on beautifying the pansies and poppies.

Am I making sense here? If not, here’s a great example of what I am trying to get at:

A friend who I have been very close with for many many years who is also pre-dental has proven my point. Well, not so much proven my point so much as she has justified a portion of my reasoning as to why I am a Psych major and not a Bio major. She goes to Chapman as well, and we have always been slightly competitive with each other, for we not only both want the same profession, but we also did competitive dancing with each other for about five or six years. The conversation went as follows:

Me: Hey! How have you been?

Her: Hey! Ugh so stressed out

Me: Oh No! How Come??

Her: My classes!! They’re so stressful!!!

Me: Oh my gosh, that’s horrible I’m so sorry [cue the internal smirk]

Her: Yeah, I’m changing my major for sure. This Bio major thing is too hard

Me: Oh really? What are you thinking about

Her: Either Psychology or Sociology, I just need to get out of Bio. 

ha HA! (I’m not laughing at her misfortune, that was more of an “ah ha” type ha ha. Hint the accent on the second half of the “ha ha”)

It just goes to show that slow and steady does sometimes win the race 🙂

Psychology of Cosmetic Dentistry

No matter how much we try to deny it, when it comes to first impressions, appearance is pretty much everything. This simple fact is essentially why us, as humans, have insecurities; we know that when we introduce ourselves to others, we are looked up and down, analyzed and picked apart in the mind of the other person.

Whether or not this person chooses to base decisions or actions off of their analysis is a totally different story, but the one aspect of appearance that is judged the most critically is teeth, according to the article The Psychology of Cosmetic Dentistry. And it is true, at least from what I’ve noticed through personal experiences in life.

Even I do it, as I have mentioned before. As soon as the mouth opens to speak or smile, the teeth are shown. Teeth are like the gateway to the rest of a person, personality and all. Compare teeth to the gate of a house– the house may be a huge, beautiful, Victorian style mansion with a long driveway, but if the gate is rusty, run down and unappealing, most wouldn’t think to go down that driveway to find the house. Granted, some people may be able to get past the rundown gate, but not everyone does. And hiding ones teeth is not an easy job, it usually consists of:

  1. An awkward, tight-lipped smile, making it easy to tell that this person is insecure about their teeth OR
  2. No smile at all, making this person appear uninterested and stand-offish, which is no fun for anyone
The article states that cosmetic dentistry has not only improved the quality of smiles, but also the quality of lives, which is a statement that I wholeheartedly agree with and stand by. This statement is the driving force behind why I wish to enter into cosmetic dentistry. I believe that everyone should feel beautiful, and a beautiful smile is so incredibly important to boost one’s self-confidence. Like the article states, “A smile enhanced by restorative dentistry brings dramatic changes—changes more than ‘skin deep.'”
With all the new technology like Invisalign and veneers, there is no longer a reason to be self-conscious about ones teeth again.

Stroke of Brilliance

ingenious.

An idea that was just sheer brilliance:

combining my two discourse communities and creating one idea.

I really do wish that I could take credit for it. Such a wonderful idea that is so simple, so easy; my complex little mind just couldn’t fathom something of that caliber. My english professor, and the one responsible for the creation of this blog came up with this idea, though it wasn’t stated in a one-on-one conversation but rather in the grading footnotes of one of my essays.

I don’t know if I have stated it yet, in fact, I know that I haven’t. I would like to focus in cosmetic dentistry. But this idea that my professor came up with was questioning just what do cosmetic dentistry and psychology have in common?

It hit my like a ton of bricks. I thought about it for a good 24 hours or so. WHY am I so attracted to the idea of cosmetic dentistry? Well, well, well Mr.Professor, way to challenge my ideas and force me to think critically– well played, sir. 

What I believe it comes down to, for me anyway, is making others feel beautiful. People have so many insecurities in their life, and good teeth can be one of the very biggest. When talking to someone, most people see others’ teeth first. It’s only natural, when the mouth opens to speak, the teeth just appear, whether they want to or not. It is more than just a good salary, it is knowing that I helped to rid others of their insecurity, which is a much greater reward than just being able to support my (future, hypothetical) family.

Food for Thought

My initial intentions with this blog is to help inform others that may be in a similar situation as me, but what I’ve found is that it’s been helping me decide what I really should do in terms of my academic path to becoming a dentist. I’m sticking to Psychology as a major– that is never going to change, I enjoy Psychology too much. But I guess what it really comes down to is my minor.

I spent quite a few hours on Tuesday looking up minor requirements, more specifically Religious Studies as a minor, and weighing those against how much I really have to do with dental school pre-reqs. My mind started melting a little. There was just so much I had to do and I went into malfunction mode. I never thought that I would contemplate taking bio on as a minor. I mean it makes sense, but I wanted to stand out and not just follow every other pre-dental student. I still most likely won’t do it, but it really is the option that makes sense.

But then, in the mix of all this, I am sort of afraid that it will invalidate this blog: If my blog is about being different and following what one wants to do and being accepted for being different, then will taking bio on as a minor make that argument go up in a puff of smoke? Hm… I really should consider this more.

I need to make an appoint with our Academic Advising Center… it’s time for some professional help.

Back Track

I feel as though I may have jumped the gun on this one. I never really actually stated the reason I put myself in such an odd situation– yay, it’s story time!

Starting back in the beginning, I have always fixated on people’s teeth. When I am talking face to face with someone, or just watching someone speak, I watch their teeth. I don’t really have a solid justification as to why I am this way, maybe it’s something about the way people’s teeth move when they talk, or how someone looks almost a gazillion times better with white, straight, healthy teeth. Whatever the reason, beware my wondering eyes when you speak to me, because they are almost certainly staring straight at your mouth.

SIDE NOTE: 

One of the most upsetting things to happen to the toddler version of myself was the crushed dream of receiving the Play Dough “Dr. Drill ‘n’ Fill” set for Chrismikkah. I was heartbroken; truly a devastating moment in the midst of my youth.

That aside, I have always known I wanted to be a dentist, and knew that the way I had to get there was through much conditioning in the area of Science. Yuck.  Not that I have anything personal against science, it is just so. much. work. But that didn’t really stop me, it’s sort of a mind over matter thing.

I did many things after that with science: I was at a science based camp every summer for 3 or 4 years, I’ve done internships and I took two lab sciences a year for three years in high school. Oh yeah, I worked my butt off. But then senior year came around and a little beauty called Psychology reared it’s head toward me. It was so simple, so fun, and I just happened to be awesome at it (awesome in my opinion, that is). When it came time to pick a major, I looked into it and realized that I did not have to major in a science to get into dental school. Oh what a glorious day that was. I could major in something that I enjoyed and make it easy on myself, while taking the tough classes on the side; my mind was set and my foot was already halfway out the door on that one.

And THAT my friends, is why I am a pre-dental psych major. you’re welcome 😉

Things I Have Learned

When dealing with an odd situation such as my own, there are many things that you learn along the way… about people, to be more specific. There are three types of people in this academic world:

  • The Cheerleaders: People who don’t totally know what they’re talking about, but always want to be on your side. They will support you in every single thing that you do, and make you believe that what you do with your life is right for you.
  • The Gravediggers: People you meet that are only there to witness, and quite possibly take part in your ultimate down fall. They do this for their own pleasure; to feed their egotistical fires and make themselves feel that strange, false sense of superiority.
  • The Angels in the Outfield: People who are genuinely there to help. They know the dirt, they’ve been through the rough; These people want to see you win and want to be your guiding hands along the way.
I can honestly say that I have met every single one of these types of people; the stories are endless. Keep these types in mind for I will surely be bringing them back up again, these people are EVERYWHERE. But thankfully my story today focuses on the Angel type.
Throw back a couple of weekends to Rush weekend, I was bustling my way between houses, getting my usual response from every single person that asks what I plan to do with my life. It all went on its usual course until one surprising moment. A new response. This one had the silence and the eye contact, but the words that came out of this girl’s mouth caught me off guard. I hardly recall what was said, but one moment I was sitting in a mundane conversation, the next I was grabbed by the wrist and thrown face to face with another girl. Words were spoken, facial expressions exchanged, there may have even been a secret handshake in there somewhere– it was all so incredibly overwhelming.
It was pretty easy to tell right off the bat this girl was here to help. After I left the room, my head was bulging with new information. i.e. “take art classes, they show that you have great manual dexterity” and “do A LOT of community service.” Things I had never even thought of. HELPFUL things. Most other people would just spit out the information I already knew: “Just take the required science classes.” or “Why don’t you just minor in Bio?”…. well thank you, captain obvious. But this Angel gave me information that is going to help give me a leg up on the competition, information that I now willingly, although a bit hesitantly, release to you, the public.
And although this is a sorority I did not end up joining, I am so incredibly thankful to have run into this Angel, because there are very few of them out there. Remember these Angels, they deserve the recognition.
  • June 2017
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