As you set goals for your personal health this year, don’t forget to include your teeth and your smile. There is a growing body of scientific research that shows a significant connection between oral health and systemic health in general. So, if you goal is to be healthier in 2011, taking care of your smile should be part of your plan. To get you started, here are some ideas to help you decide what you want to do for your own smile.

1. Half of the people who have dental insurance don’t use it. If you are one of those, take advantage of what you have this year and make an appointment with a dentist to evaluate your oral health.

2. Even if you do not have dental insurance and have no discomfort in your mouth, remember that preventing dental problems is much more economical that treating them after they occur. Make a commitment to follow a regular dental maintenance plan.

3. If your dentist has already recommended a plan to optimize your oral health, follow through with it. Even if you don’t do it all this year, take care of the things that are the highest priority.

4. Dental problems seldom get better on their own. If you know something is wrong with your teeth or gums, deal with it this year before it becomes more complicated and expensive.

5. Maybe 2011 is the year to make the aesthetic changes to your smile that you have always wanted. Ask your dentist to do a computer simulation for the changes you want so you can have a visual proposal to help you decide.

My team and I are available to help you make 2011 your “Year of the Smile.”

Yours for excellent dental health,
Dr. S