5 Holiday Stocking Stuffers to Make a Smile Brighter!

 The Holidays are now in full swing. It’s getting colder, the sun is setting a little earlier, but the decorations are out and shining bright. The holidays are a time where people get together and celebrate friends, family, good health, happiness, and festive foods! With all the holiday sweets and desserts that we usually eat around this time, we don’t stop to think about the effects all that sugar can have on our teeth. Just like you, we know it’s not easy staying healthy over the holidays. For this Christmas, we’re striving to be more mindful of our oral health, do what we can to prevent any sugar overload, and invite you to take that on as well. Since we’re thinking about our oral health and what we can give out for gifts (because there’s still time!), let’s discuss some healthy and useful stocking stuffer options, that are also affordable for all budgets.

  • Toothbrush covers: When we’re done brushing our teeth, our toothbrushes sit uncovered, and they start to collect all kinds of bacteria before we start using it again. It’s super gross to think about it, but a simple toothbrush cover can help protect the bristles. It’s also convenient to have, especially when traveling. The cover is a great idea to give as a gift because it can keep our brushes hygienic and dust-free. PRO TIP: Just like your toothbrush, remember to replace them frequently.
  • Sugar-free gum: Candy is a common stocking stuffer and whether it’s sugar-free or not, who doesn’t love gum?! Sugar-free gum is the healthiest option for teeth, especially kids. Gum also helps us produce more saliva. More saliva prevents dry mouth and helps clean bacteria and clear food particles that tend to linger after meals.
  • Travel toothpaste and mouthwash: Small, travel size toothpaste and mouthwash are convenient to have around. Be it preparing for a trip, sleep over, or unexpected guests.
  • Fun Flossers/Floss Picks: If we want to start them off early, fun flossers are a way to encourage kids to start flossing daily. Fun flossers brands like DenTek and Plackers come in unique shapes and colors to make flossing more fun for kids. Some flossers out there even come in different flavors with fluoride coating, which we all need for our teeth! Floss picks are another option that we can give out to people who procrastinate with a flossing routine. Stick a container of floss picks in their stockings, the picks are much easier to use than the regular traditional string floss.
  • Electric toothbrush: Electric toothbrushes clean teeth and gums much better than the traditional manual ones we’re used to. Chief Executive of the Oral Health Foundation, Dr. Nigel Carter OBE says people who use an electric toothbrush have healthier gums, less tooth decay, and also keep their teeth for longer. There are also ones for kids that come in different colors and cartoon characters, that’ll get them excited to start brushing their teeth. PRO TIP: unsure if electric is for you? Try the battery powered ones.

    That should take care of our stocking stuffer gifts, but what about when we’re with our family and friends? We should be able to enjoy the holiday season without worrying about cavities or plaque. If you need a list to keep you on track to maintaining a clean and healthy mouth, we got that covered! Check out our list of what we can do this holiday season to keep our teeth healthy.

  • Avoid overdoing it: Candy canes, cookies, cakes, and popcorn, all the wonderful classics we’ll eat during Christmas time. All the sticky, hard, gummy, and chewy foods are tasty, but can be difficult to get out and off our teeth. If we’re constantly snacking on something, we run a higher risk of tooth decay. Let’s try slowing down on the sugar and brushing after every meal. PRO TIP: Chewing sugar-free gum after a meal, can also help for those times you don’t have a toothbrush handy.
  • Eat more of the healthy foods: If we’re worried about eating too much sugar, we can eat more fruits and vegetables just to balance out what we’re eating. Winter favorites like apples, carrots, and celery help clean plaque from teeth and freshen breaths.
  • Stick to our daily routine: Brushing and flossing may sound tedious, but if we want to keep our teeth in great shape, we must stick to our daily routine. By brushing twice daily, flossing, and using mouthwash, we can keep up our good oral habits. PRO TIP: just brush and floss the teeth you’d like to keep!
  • Drink plenty of water: We all know that drinking water has many benefits, and those benefits can work for us especially around the holidays. When we’re going out to see friends and family, it’s very important to stay hydrated. Aside from hydration, water can freshen breaths and it’s a quick way to get rid of debris in our teeth.

    The holidays are always a great time, we spend 11 months looking forward to this time of year. While we are having fun and enjoying ourselves, we can also be mindful about caring for our teeth. Keeping up with our daily routines and going the extra mile can assist in preventing dental problems down the line. Share these helpful tips with family and friends so they can be aware of what to do around this time and support you as well. Happy Holidays and keep those teeth shining bright!

Smith Valley Smiles

2311 Highway 208
Smith, NV 89430
Phone: 775-465-2388

Five Gift Ideas To Celebrate Mom This Year

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:

  1. 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!
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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!

Smith Valley Smiles

2311 Highway 208
Smith, NV 89430
Phone: 775-465-2388

EGG-STRA Special Easter Ideas for 2021

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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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!
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. Water Bottle. The more personalized to what they’re into, the more they’ll love to hydrate! Not sure what they’ll like? A solid color with 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 the 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 you 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 lead 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. At 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 filling 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 a 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!

Smith Valley Smiles

2311 Highway 208
Smith, NV 89430
Phone: 775-465-2388