What is the floss, and why is everyone doing it?!

If you’re on Instagram or you have children, the chances are you’ve heard of the floss. The dance craze of the moment, it basically involves swinging your hips while moving your arms in front and behind. Get the coordination right and the move looks uncannily similar to a flossing session in front of the mirror. So why is everyone doing it?

The floss has actually been around for a while (in internet terms anyway) – it was invented in 2016 by an American teenage Instagram star called the Backpack Kid. His real name is Russell Horning and he has 1.7 million followers, all captivated by his signature dance moves, executed wearing a backpack and a deadpan expression. This summer, the floss looks set to reach its global peak – literally everyone is doing it, in playgrounds and football stadiums, on the news and on chat shows. It even inspired the Czech Republic’s Eurovision performance!

And while the floss is likely to have been long forgotten by next summer, it’s one bandwagon we’re happy to jump on here at Rhiwbina Dental!

Let the floss inspire you to…

…brush for two minutes, twice a day. This is the most important thing you can do to keep plaque at bay. Plaque is a biofilm of bacteria that continually forms around the gum line, which will attack enamel and gums if not brushed away regularly. Two minutes is the proven time you need to remove plaque effectively.

…floss at least once a day. If you only brush, you’re potentially missing 40 percent of your teeth, leaving food behind that will cause staining, tooth decay, bad breath and gum problems, as well as allowing all that plaque to harden into tartar, which exacerbates those problems and can only be removed by a professional.

…schedule your hygiene appointment. Regular hygiene appointments are crucial to maintaining healthy teeth and gums, fresh breath and a stain-free smile. You don’t need to see the dentist beforehand but can book directly with your hygienist, who will carry out a professional deep-clean and offer the latest tips and techniques for keeping your smile healthy at home.

Be inspired by the floss! Call us today on 029 2062 6551 to book your direct-access hygiene appointment at Rhiwbina Dental.

Busting the myths about teeth whitening

With the summer months stretching ahead, it’s likely you’ll have plenty of occasions lined up that may have got you thinking about getting your teeth whitened. After all, what better way to look your best at that wedding, summer party or obligatory BBQ than with a bright, white smile?

But google ‘teeth whitening’ and you’ll find many, many options to scroll through – about 2.7 million in fact! Prices and products vary wildly – so we’ve decided to bust the myths right here so you know exactly what you’re letting yourself in for.

Myth 1: Whitening will damage your teeth
Teeth whitening is safe – but only if it is carried out by a professional who is registered with the General Dental Council. What’s more, this is the only way you can legally access the prescription-strength bleaching gel required to get the results you want without any risk of harm to your teeth or gums. At Rhiwbina Dental, we’ll carry out a thorough examination to make sure you’re dentally fit enough for teeth whitening, and we’ll monitor your progress during and after your treatment – so there’s no danger of compromising your smile.

Myth 2: Whitening can go too far
Few patients want to go mega-watt-white – Ross from Friends, Simon Cowell and the entire cast of TOWIE have a lot to answer for when it comes to stoking our fears about OTT whitening! But rest assured that if you choose to have your teeth whitened via your dentist, it’s a gradual, monitored process that gives predictable results. At Rhiwbina Dental, we offer both in-surgery and home whitening, and we’ll recommend the strength of whitening gel and type of treatment that are best for you. We promise you won’t experience the ‘Ross effect’ unless you actually want your teeth to look that way!

Myth 3: Charcoal toothpaste is as effective as bleaching
Charcoal toothpaste has such a huge presence on Instagram, it’s already becoming a cliché. But its pretty packaging, #spon posts by influencers and positioning as a ‘natural’ whitening option are nonetheless compelling. There is no scientific evidence to suggest that active charcoal does any more for your teeth than remove regular surface stains – plus, it doesn’t contain fluoride, so using it potentially increases your risk of tooth decay. Professional teeth whitening, using prescription bleaching gel, is the only way you can physically whiten your teeth beyond their natural hue and get the shade you really want.

Myth 4: whitening will last for ever
Not true – sadly! Professional teeth whitening creates a dramatic transformation that can last for up to three years – but eventually, your food, drink and lifestyle will begin to leave their mark again. The best way to keep those pearlies permanently white is to be mindful about what you’re eating and drinking (definitely consider using a straw more often!), don’t smoke, and follow a great oral hygiene routine. Combine this with periodic ‘top-up’ treatments using your custom-made whitening trays and you’ll be able to maintain your beautiful smile in the long term.

Want to get your teeth whitened the right way? Call Rhiwbina Dental today on 029 2062 6551 to schedule your whitening consultation!

5 surprising benefits of smiling

Put on a happy face – it’s National Smile Month! The brainchild of the British Oral Health Foundation, National Smile Month runs from 14th May to 14th June this year –and we’re joining in!

National Smile Month aims to raise awareness about good oral health and focuses on three essential messages: brushing twice a day; reducing sugar consumption; and regular dental visits. As a Rhiwbina Dental patient, you’ll already be on board with great oral hygiene (if you’re not, we promise you’ll hear about it from us!) – but National Smile Month has also got us thinking about smiling in general. What does smiling actually achieve?

Reduce stress
Research published in the journal Psychological Science monitored participants’ heart rates during a task. Those who smiled naturally throughout their task tended to have a lower heart rate, which recovered more quickly after the activity, than those who weren’t smiling naturally.

Boost your mood
The act of smiling spurs a powerful chemical reaction in the brain that releases the happiness hormones dopamine and serotonin. Scientists think that even a forced smile has the potential to trick the brain into making you feel good – so fake it till you make it!

Spread positivity
Just like yawning, smiling is proven to be contagious! The majority of us are hardwired to mimic other people’s facial expressions in social situations, and we often do this unconsciously. So if you walk into a room smiling, the room will smile back, creating a cycle of positivity!

Improve your health
The endorphin release associated with smiling has the added benefit of lowering your blood pressure and reducing your perception of pain. Meanwhile, serotonin reduces stress levels – so a smile effectively stimulates a chemical cocktail of natural health boosters that strengthen your immune system and keep depression at bay.

Change the way you’re perceived
Smiling has variously been proven to make you look younger (a natural facelift), more trustworthy and more successful, as well as inspiring more confidence in your abilities. Get into the habit of smiling more often, and you could well find new doors opening in your career and relationships.  

If you actively avoid smiling because you’re not happy with your smile, you could be denying yourself a host of health benefits. Talk to the team at Rhiwbina Dental to find out how we can help create a smile to be proud of – dental implants, veneers, teeth whitening and discreet teeth straightening solutions are all options we can discuss! And who knows, perhaps National Smile Month will be the perfect time to discover just how happy your smile can make you!

How can we make you smile this month? Call us on 029 2062 6551 to find out!

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