How Old Do You Want To Be?

     Have you ever asked yourself how old you want to be before you die? I sometimes wonder if a person gets to a point in their life when they say, "Holy buckets, I’m too old for this life."  I know as a kid twenty sounded old until I turned 19 then thirty didn’t sound so awful.  I’m at the point in my life where fifty is only a decade away and I know sixty will be here before I know it.  I recently heard sixty is the new thirty.  Mike’s Grandma thought eighty sounded ancient until she got closer to ninety and her zest for life stayed with her until the day she died. 

     I found out some interesting information the other day about how to live longer.  Not sure what longer is in my case but I do know I floss my teeth every day so I will get to add at least six years to whatever longer is.

From the 21st Century Dentistry website: On flossing, the book states that, "Flossing your teeth daily can make your arteries younger. The probable reason: Flossing helps keep your immune system young… the same bacteria that cause periodontal disease also trigger an immune response, inflammation, that causes the arteries to swell. The swelling of the arterial walls results in a constriction of blood flow that can lead to a higher incidence of cardiovascular disease. Other studies have shown that periodontal disease leads to a higher white blood cell count, which is an indicator that the immune system is under increased stress…. Poor oral hygiene and particularly increased tooth loss are important indicators of your risk. The fewer teeth you have, the greater your risk of gum infections."

If you don’t floss like we advise, at least take this piece of advice from the Academy of General Dentistry – kissing is linked to the prevention of tooth decay. Kissing stimulates saliva, which helps reduce the incidence of cavities.

"Kissing is nature’s cleansing process," says Heidi Hausauer, a dentist and spokeswoman for the academy. "Saliva washes out the mouth and helps remove the cavity-causing food particles that accumulate after meals."

If you have no one to kiss, try sugar-free gum. It’s not quite as fun, but still very effective in producing saliva.