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5 Hacks Everyone with Invisalign Needs to Know

5 Hacks Everyone with Invisalign Needs to Know

Invisalign is a fantastic treatment for correcting orthodontic problems discreetly and transforming your smile. It can produce really impressive results and is growing in popularity.

Not only are they almost invisible, the aligners are much more comfortable than the traditional fixed braces, and as they can be taken out, they are also much less restrictive to your lifestyle. You can still eat whatever you want comfortably, and even take them out temporarily for big events such as weddings.

If you are embarking upon an Invisalign journey, or even if you are part way through, here are some tips to make the process easier.

1. Travel Toothbrushes Are Your Friend

Carry a travel toothbrush and toothpaste with you wherever you go, if possible, and brush your teeth after every meal. If you can’t brush them right after a meal, chew some sugar-free gum, and brush them as soon as you are able. This may seem inconvenient at first, but you will soon get used to it, and your dentist will be happy with you.

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Patients who take good care to clean their teeth during Invisalign treatment are very unlikely to develop cavities.

You are also less likely to have problems with bad breath throughout the day if you are on top of your oral hygiene.

2. Switch Aligners At Night Time

When you are switching to your next set of aligners, consider changing them at night time. Take some ibuprofen, and you should be able to sleep through the initial adjustment process and avoid having to deal with any discomfort during the day time.

There isn’t usually pain between sets anyway, but particularly in the first few aligners there may be some discomfort, which can be minimised this way.

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3. Look After Your Aligners

Put them in a glass of water with a denture cleaning tablet in the morning. This will help keep them fresh and clean, and combat morning breath. It also helps to keep them looking nice and clear, and avoid discolouration.

Don’t use toothpaste to brush them, as it contains abrasive ingredients. This can actually cause the aligners to build up stains and odours. If you want to brush them, just use water or a mild soap.

Always carry your case with you. Don’t wrap them in a napkin when you’re out for a meal, as the risk of accidentally throwing them away is too high and they are expensive to replace!

4. Watch What You Drink

Drink plenty of water. Keeping hydrated will help avoid problems such as bad breath, and stop your mouth feeling uncomfortable.

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Don’t drink hot drinks such as tea or coffee with your Invisalign in, as you could warp them. Avoid drinks such as red wine that can stain the plastic. You don’t want your stained aligners to make your teeth look yellow.

If you drink alcohol with the aligners in, opt for clear coloured drinks, such as white wine, gin, or vodka.

Avoid sugary mixers and opt for soda or tonic instead. Not only do you risk decay, but they can make your teeth feel a bit furry and unpleasant if you drink soft drinks with your aligners in.

Always brush your teeth after drinking anything other than water. You don’t have to do it after every single drink, but ideally at the end of a night out or coffee break.

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5. Wear Your Retainer

Always be prepared to wear retainers after you are finished with your Invisalign braces. If you’re investing hard earned cash into your smile, the last thing you want is for your teeth to move back to their original positions once you’ve got your braces off.

Make the most of being used to wearing your aligners regularly, and stick to wearing your retainers once you’ve finished your Invisalign treatment. You will regret it if you don’t!

Featured photo credit: cincismiles.com via cincismiles.com

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How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

How to Keep Yourself Awake at Work Without Caffeine

Keeping yourself awake at work can be a real challenge when you’re bored, exhausted or sleep-deprived.

But before you reach for that can of Red Bull, bottle of Mountain Dew, or pot of coffee, try these healthy remedies to stimulate your 5 different senses and help you stay awake at work:

Sight – Visual Stimulation

The first thing you do when you wake up is opening your eyes, so your visual stimulation is very important to keeping your energy level high.

1. Maximize your exposure to light.

Your body’s internal rhythm is regulated by the amount of light you receive. The greater your exposure, the more alert you will feel.

Open the shades and let in the sunlight. Step outside or look out the window. Turn on all the artificial lights in your office or around your work space.

2. Exercise your eyes (or give them a break).

Roll your eyes up and down, side to side and diagonally. Rotate them clockwise and then counterclockwise. Squeeze them shut and then open them wide. Do this several times.

Reading and sitting in front of a computer screen for long periods can lead to eye fatigue.

Take regular breaks with deliberate blinking and looking out into the distance.

3. Take note of your environment.

Learn to enjoy people-watching. Observe their activities, speech, body language and interactions with others. Notice the details of building, trees and other objects around you, including their color, shape and size.

By doing this, you’re not only relaxing your eye muscles but also calming your mind.

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Hearing – Auditory Stimulation

What you hear or listen to have direct effect on your brain. This is why we feel so annoyed and sometimes angry when we hear construction noise when we’re working.

4. Engage in conversation.

Talk to a friend or colleague. Trade funny stories. Discuss your business venture, a creative idea, the latest political scandal, or any other topic that interests you.

Practice mindful listening to what you and the other person are saying. Tune into the tone, volume and content of the conversation.

Learn how to practice better listening from this guide:

Why Listen to Reply Instead of Understand Is the Key to Failure

5. Listen to upbeat music.

Try hip hop, rock or jazz to keep you alert. Instrumental, non-distracting music works best.

Sing, whistle, and hum along if you can. Plug in the earphones if you must.

Smell – Olfactory Stimulation

If you’re feeling sleepy and suddenly smell the coffee, you’ll probably feel more energetic. This is why smell is an influential stimulation.

6. Work your nose.

Aroma therapists recommend essential oils of peppermint (to boost energy), rosemary (to build awareness), eucalyptus (to increase oxygen), cedarwood  (to activate your mind), and cinnamon (to improve your reaction time).

If you don’t have essential oils on hand, you can use lotions or burning candles that provide the same scents.

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Citrus like lemons, limes, grapefruits and oranges are also natural olfactory stimulants. Get a whiff of these citrus scents to stay awake.

Taste – Gustatory Stimulation

If you want an energetic day at work, you can’t let your tongue feeling plain and flavorless.

7. Have a good breakfast.

Start off with the most important meal of the day.

Think fresh, light and healthy: bran cereals, wholegrain breads, fruits, and yogurt.

Nix the heavy stuff like sausages, greasy eggs or pancakes.

Need some breakfasts inspirations? Check out these ideas:

20 Healthy Breakfast Choices That Will Save You Time

8. Drink lots of water.

Keep a glass or bottle of H2O near you and sip from it throughout the day. Dehydration can leave you feeling tired, sluggish and sleepy.

So make sure you drink enough water throughout the day. Not sure how much to drink? This can help you:

How Much Water Should You Drink Each Day (and How Much Is Too Much for You)

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Think that you’ve been drinking too little water? Try these friendly reminders:

3 Best Apps To Help You Drink Much More Water

9. Eat energy-boosting snacks.

Nuts and fruits (like bananas, apples and strawberries) are sure bets. Pairings with staying power include baby carrots with a low-fat cream cheese dip; celery sticks with peanut butter; red peppers with hummus; and plain yogurt with granola.

Avoid carb-filled, sugary snacks that make you crash and leave you feeling tired.

Here you can find some healthy snack ideas:

25 Healthy Snack Recipes To Make Your Workday More Productive

Touch – Tactile Stimulation

Last but not least, your sense of touch will make you physically feel more energetic and less stressful.

10. Splash cold water on your face.

Do this in the morning, during bathroom breaks and in the afternoon. Being exposed to cold water pushes your body to adjust and regulate its internal temperature, which in turn keeps you alert.

This works the same as you take a cold shower to increase mood and alertness. Take a look at this article to learn more about it:

5 Surprising Benefits of Cold Showers

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11. Use acupressure.

Apply pressure to, massage, or tap on the stimulation points of your body. These include the top of your head, the back of your neck, the back of your hand (between the thumb and index finger), just below the knee and your earlobes.

Watch this video to learn about the acupressure points you can try:

12. Get moving.

Move away from your chair and stand, walk, run or climb the stairs. Feel the earth under your feet. Stretch and twist. Do jumping jacks, lunges, push-ups and back bends.

And if you need to move more discreetly, wiggle your feet, bounce your knee up and down, scrunch your toes, or cross your legs.

You can also try some simple stretches and exercises at your desk:

Unlike addictive caffeine fixes, these remedies activate your senses, engage your attention, amp up your energy and prevent morning grogginess and afternoon slumps without the side effects or health risks.

Pick a few ways from this list of suggestions and practice them consistently. And when you do this consistently, you’ll soon see the positive results — a more energetic and productive you at work.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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