How to Pack for a Weekend Getaway

How to Pack for a Weekend Getaway

As brief as your trip may be, two short and sweet days can be all you need to reboot. However, don’t let your preparation stay in the way of the upcoming joys of sunbathing, or cocoa by the fire for the winter-lovers. Instead, you can outsmart your packing jitters and start your journey with a peace of mind!

Start with the Basics

Weekend Getaway

While you’re worrying which pair of jeans looks better with your favorite sneakers, you might end up forgetting to pack your undies altogether. To avoid this lovely mess, start by packing your underwear and hygiene essentials. Think: wet wipes, your toothbrush neatly stored in a travel-friendly sanitizer, deodorant, and your skincare necessities.
Also, don’t forget your passport, your keys, and your credit cards along with an emergency cash stash, and you’ll be safe and sound even if you leave something at home.

Be Weather-Ready

Be Weather-Ready

Check the forecast for your destination and choose your outfits accordingly. That way, you can avoid packing too many “just in case” items and save room for souvenirs or an extra book you’ve been meaning to read. However, it’s always smart to think in layers and stick to the classics, and a compact umbrella is a must.
A pair of comfortable jeans can go well with your sneakers and a plain white t-shirt, while a leather jacket can keep you warm on chill evenings no matter your style.

Choose your Travel-Wears

Choose your Travel-Wears

Absolutely pick the clothes that are comfortable, but you can also plan to wear some of your bulkier items as well, in order to make extra room in your bag. That leather jacket can be with you on the plane, and you can wear those ankle boots you love, while leaving room for an extra pair of flats.
If possible, you can wear the same outfit on your flight back, which will save you the trouble when it’s time to pack for your return.

If Possible, Stick to Carry-On

If Possible, Stick to Carry-On

The greatest temptation of all might be to bring a check-in bag, which is completely unnecessary for a two-day trip. Find a high-quality bag that fits the dimensions of carry-on luggage, and use it as a point of reference.
These bags are deceptively small but can fit a surprising number of clothes. But once you master the art of single-bag packing for your weekend getaways, you will never have to waste another moment pensively staring at your wardrobe – it will all be neatly over in a matter of minutes!

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Don’t Let Red Wine Teeth Ruin your Date Night

Don’t Let Red Wine Teeth Ruin your Date Night

It’s a lovely evening, and you’ve caught the Saturday night fever! So why not loosen up and enjoy a glass of the restaurant’s finest red with your date? When the time comes to powder your nose, you see your reflection in the mirror, and oh my, have you got a fiery smile! Although a fun anecdote to tell your best friend, you’d probably prefer to avoid such a mishap from repeating itself. Let’s take a look at just what you need to do in order to prevent your favorite red wine from ruining your teeth.

1. Say Cheese

Say Cheese

Not only is this a delicious solution, but a highly effective one. The harder kinds are the most beneficial, as they provide a barrier for your pearly whites and prevent the acid in wine from leaving stains.
Cheese is also rich in calcium, a healthy component that keeps your enamel strong. Who knew that wine and cheese make such an incredible couple?

2. Grasp at Straws

Red wine teeth

Don’t mind the look, it’s the function that matters! Ask the waiter to bring you a straw for your wine, as keeping your teeth from ever touching the wine could be the best protection. It’s not ideal, since you’ll deprive yourself of that tantalizingly rich savoring, but your smile will be worth it.
Also remember not to start white and then move on to red. White wine has a higher level of acidity, so it can strip your teeth of their natural protective barrier making it all the more difficult to prevent red stains later on.

3. Brush Before, not After

Brush Before, not After

Once again, your toothbrush is your smile’s best friend! Make sure to brush thoroughly about an hour before you meet your date. It will not only make your breath fresh, but it will also protect your teeth from coloring by removing as much plaque as possible – which is where the red sticks to in the first place.
Then again, brushing immediately after drinking wine can actually damage your enamel due to the amount of acid. You can take a sip of plain water to rinse out the acid residue.

4. Fiber up

Fiber up

Your pungent cheesy friend isn’t the only snack your smile will love. If you’re not a fan of dairy, you can enjoy a plate of various vegetables, such as celery, broccoli and carrots. These wonderful greens are full of healthy fiber and simply nibbling on them will be a natural cleanser for your teeth.

5. Wipe the smile clean

Wipe the smile clean

It’s precisely for these occasions that Ms. Kimberly Walker cleverly came up with the idea of wine wipes. Yes, you’ve read that correctly, there are wipes designed to remove red stains from your smile when none of the above strategies seem to do the trick.

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Here’s Why You Should Avoid Excessive Brushing

Here's Why You Should Avoid Excessive Brushing

Everyone brushes their teeth differently, some more effectively than others do. The way you brush your teeth can and does have a significant impact on your immediate, as well as your long-term oral health. Brushing your teeth the wrong way can have serious consequences for your overall health, and it’s important to recognize and act on bad habits you might want to get rid of before it is too late and the damage becomes irreversible. Here is why you should avoid excessive teeth brushing at all costs.

Excessive Brushing Prompts Gum Retraction

Excessive Brushing Prompts Gum Retraction

You might have heard these tales before and believe it or not, they are true. Excessive brushing over a prolonged period of time will damage your gums and force them to retract, exposing your teeth and ultimately, their roots.
This is a position you do not want to find yourself in, as gum retraction takes a lot of time to heal and to return to its previous, healthy state. The younger you are, the better your gums will react to medication and thus return to a healthy state faster. However, severe gum retraction will require a costly trip to an oral surgeon.

It Can Form Dangerous Oral Wounds

An equally important side effect of excessive brushing is gum damage. As you keep applying unnecessary pressure while scrubbing your teeth clean, you are turning the bristles of the toothbrush into tiny knives aimed at cutting and bruising everything in their path. This is why sometimes you see blood coming out of your mouth when you rinse it out.
Damaging your gums can lead to severe health issues down the road, as open wounds inside your mouth will allow dirt and food waste to accumulate, leading to a nasty infection. An infection in your gums will spur the growth of dangerous bacteria that will find their way into your respiratory system, the roots of your teeth and eventually, your bloodstream. So make sure you don’t damage your gums while brushing to avoid serious health problems.

Excessive Brushing Damages Your Teeth Enamel

Excessive Brushing Damages Your Teeth EnamelExcessive Brushing Damages Your Teeth Enamel

Your teeth have their protective layer that keeps the bad stuff away and nurtures a healthy set of pearly whites. Therefore, your teeth enamel should be nurtured through careful brushing rather than damaged with unnecessary pressure. Moreover, while studies have found a strong correlation between excessive brushing and enamel damage, they have not found any benefits in terms of oral health or cleanliness.
Therefore, there is no viable reason to brush your teeth more than twice a day, or to use excessive force when maintaining your pearly whites.

The Proper Way to Brush

Let us end the list with a practical solution for your bad teeth brushing habit by giving you a clear set of steps to maintain your oral health the right way.
First of all, you would want to use an electric toothbrush rather than a traditional one, as it is far safer for your teeth and gums. Secondly, you should take care of your toothbrush by using a sanitizer to keep it clean and germ-free. If you’re not using a sanitizer, you will have to replace your toothbrush at least once every two months.
As far as brushing goes, apply mild to moderate pressure while cleaning the outer surfaces of your upper teeth and then move onto your lower teeth. Keep the brush at a 45° angle to avoid damaging the gums and sweep it back and forth.
Repeat the process for the inner surfaces of your upper and lower teeth, and move onto the chewing areas, making sure you are brushing the chewing surface of every tooth using short back-and-forth strokes. Finally, you should brush your tongue to remove any bacteria and freshen up your breath.

Proper teeth brushing is imperative in maintaining the longevity and health of your teeth and gums. Moreover, it is an important factor in safeguarding your long-term health, so be sure to avoid the dangers of excessive brushing and nurture a healthy smile with these simple and effective guidelines.

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A Gamechanger: Diet Soda is Actually Bad for Your Teeth

Strangest Toothpaste Flavors from Around the World

Sorry, Diet soda lovers, but it seems that it’s not just sugar that can ruin your pearly whites! You might believe that opting for a diet soda instead of its evil twin-sibling, sugar-laden soda is better for your health. On the contrary, the key teeth-eroding ingredient in a soda is not sugar alone. Diet soda is bad for your teeth.

The Key Culprits

Do you know what makes your soda so wonderfully bubbly? Carbonated water, which is produced by dissolving carbonic acid in water. Typically, sodas contain other acids as well, such as phosphoric and citric, the later one being present in those that have a lemony taste.
Other acids in sodas serve to improve taste and preserve the drink, so they behave as standard flavor enhancers and additives, but they are equally bad for your teeth. Combine that with the acid that your mouth bacteria produce when they “eat” sugar, and you have a killer combo. Sorry to burst your bubble!

The Effect on your Smile

Diet Soda Bad for Your Teeth

Dental experts compare an avid soda consumer’s mouth to that of a heavy drug addict. A picture is worth a thousand words, they say, but unless you terribly need motivation to quit your soda habits, don’t Google the term. It’s terrifying, to say the least.
In a study conducted by the University of Michigan, your enamel is bound to suffer greatly after long-term consumption of soda, with no difference between diet and regular. Mountain Dew, canned ice tea and Sprite came out as “winners”, causing the most damage, followed by Pepsi and Cola drinks.

Smart Soda Drinking

Smart Soda Drinking

Yes, you’re best off without the bubbly goodies, but if you still insist on having an occasional soda, it’s best to change the way you drink it.
First of all, don’t let the soda stay too long in your mouth, and after you finish the drink, rinse with tap water. And finally, never brush your teeth immediately after drinking soda – that can only damage your enamel even more, so wait for at least an hour.

Safe Alternatives

Your safest bet? Water, of course! But brewed coffee, tea and root beer are also teeth-friendly, if you crave for a different type of refreshment.
Keep in mind that lemony drinks contain plenty of citric acid, which is said to be almost as corrosive as battery acid. Sugared juices might not be as acidic, but they sure are sweet, and that’s your teeth’s second-worst nightmare.

Care for your lovely smile by making healthy choices every day, not just during those few minutes of brushing, and you’ll show off those pearls for years to come!

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11 Things You Won’t Believe are Dirtier Than Your Bathroom

11 Things You Won’t Believe are Dirtier Than Your Bathroom

It is often the case that people believe that their bathrooms are the most bacteria-infested areas of the house, with the toilet and perhaps the shower taking center stage as dirtiest elements. However, research has shown that that is simply not the case, as people tend to keep their bathrooms extremely clean in comparison to other things in their life taken for granted while predominantly believed to be sanitary.
It still remains unclear why the majority of people remain unaware of the health dangers of other common household items. Here are the eleven things you won’t believe are dirtier than your bathroom, and what you can do about it.

Your Refrigerator

Dirtier Than Your Bathroom

Believe it or not, your refrigerator is a perfect host for food waste accumulation. By failing to clean it regularly (the produce drawers especially) you are allowing dangerous bacteria to form in the food remains and the accumulated dirt.
Your solution: make your own natural cleaning product out of lemon juice, warm water, and vinegar. Scrub your refrigerator clean once a month.

The Carpets

The Carpets

Carpets are the perfect nesting ground for bacteria, lice, mites and all other kinds of unwanted creatures that could harm your health. Given the fact that carpets seldom enjoy a thorough, deep cleaning, over time they become dirtier than any bathroom amenity.
Your solution: use a steam cleaner to run a deep sweep of your carpet and get into every nook and cranny.

Chopping boards

Chopping boards

Did you know that raw meat and vegetables carry a high percentage of fecal matter, making your chopping board dirtier than your toilet seat?
Your solution: scrub your chopping boards with detergent every day to maintain a clean, healthy surface.

Toothbrushes

Toothbrushes

You might not have been aware of this, but your toothbrush might just be the most contaminated item in your home. When you flush the toilet, germs and harmful bacteria can travel up to six feet in the air and linger for more than two hours. Predominantly, these germs end up on your toothbrush.
Your solution: put the toilet seat down before flushing and be sure to use a UV Toothbrush Sanitizer to eliminate all germs and bacteria.

Doorknobs

Doorknobs

Some of the common household elements that constantly come into contact with your hands are the doorknobs. Doorknobs are the first thing you touch when you enter or exit a room and they rarely get cleaned at all.
Your solution: grab some of that natural cleaner and incorporate regular door knob scrubbing into your weekly cleaning routine.

Your Smartphone

Your Smartphone

Did you know that the average smartphone has been found to host more than 25,000 germs per square inch on its surface, making your phone one of the dirtiest items your own?
Your solution: get yourself a smartphone cleaning kit and clean it thoroughly at least three times a week. And get a screen guard as well.

Your Remote Control

Your Remote Control

Have you ever cleaned your remote control? The answer is probably no, aside from an occasional dusting, which will only spread the bacteria even more. Using it all the time but cleaning it rarely will make it as dirty as your smartphone.
Your solution: use alcohol wet wipes and scrub your remote control clean every week.

Your Kitchen Sink

Your Kitchen Sink

Luckily, people tend to keep their kitchen relatively clean if not to promote their health, then to maintain a pleasant visual aspect. However, if you neglect your sink hygiene for just a couple of days, it can easily become dirtier than your entire bathroom.
Your solution: simply clean the sink more frequently with natural cleaners.

Your Pillow

Your Pillow

One of the biggest culprits in the development of sleep disorders as well as chronic illnesses such as asthma is your pillow. Dead skins cells, dust mites, fungal spores, pollens, and other body secretions are all floating around your airways at night, affecting your long-term health.
Your solution: pop the pillows and their pillowcases in the washing machine once a month and use a mite and allergen repellent in your washing cycle.

Money

Money

It’s a good thing that the world is slowly transitioning to a paperless future, because bank notes can have more than 200,000 harmful bacteria on their surface, boasting more fecal matter than a dirty public restroom.
Your solution: wash your hands thoroughly after handling cash, and try to use your credit card more often.

Your keyboard

Your keyboard

Another commonly used item in the digital world that rarely gets a scrubbing treatment is the keyboard. Your keyboard can have 200 times more bacteria than your toilet seat and is home to dirt that you easily transfer onto your other gadgets, your food, and one way or another, into your mouth.
Your solution: disconnect the keyboard, and give it a weekly wipe with an alcohol wet wipe to eliminate some of the dirt. However, you won’t be able to reach the nook and crannies so make sure you wash your hands regularly instead.

What was once thought to be the dirtiest part of the household has now fallen into the shadow of far dirtier items you commonly use. Be sure to follow these solutions in order to maintain a clean living environment, and ensure a happy and a healthy future.

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What Not to Do When Cleaning a Toothbrush

What Not to Do When Cleaning a Toothbrush

It seems like a simple, straightforward process that requires little to no expertise. Yet, many people fail to implement the basic rules of maintaining a clean toothbrush and end up putting their oral care in jeopardy. Here’s a comprehensive list of missteps to avoid when cleaning a toothbrush!

Upside-down placement

cleaning a toothbrush!

Even if you clean your toothbrush thoroughly on a regular basis, if you store it by placing it head-first into the bacterial build up of your cup, then it defeats the purpose of cleaning it in the first place.
Keep your brushes upright and clean your container at least once a week to remove the dirt residue and prevent any contamination.

Too close to the toilet

Too close to the toilet

You’ve used it, washed it and rinsed it, and then you placed it less than 2 feet from your toilet? Then you expose your brush to water with microparticles of fecal matter that fill the air when you flush, which cannot be good for your oral health.
Store your brushes at least those 2 feet away from the toilet, rinse them before your next use, and flush with the lid down for good measure.

Harsh disinfection

Harsh disinfection

The American Dental Association explains that using mouthwash or microwaves to clean your toothbrush doesn’t have any proven value added. On the contrary, it can cause damage to your bristles, making the brush less effective.
If you want to deep-clean your toothbrush, use a UV sanitizer which is perfectly safe and doubles as a storage container.

Avoid toothbrush kisses

Avoid toothbrush kisses

Even when all of your family members follow the simple procedure of rinsing out food debris with hot water from the toothbrush before and after every brushing, things can still get dirty.
Letting your toothbrushes stand too close together and come in contact with each other can spread contamination as much as sharing a toothbrush with a family member, and neither is a good idea.

Simply put, stick to your wash and rinse strategy mixed with a trusty sanitizer, and you needn’t worry about those pesky bacteria, especially if you listen to your dentist and get a new brush every three to four months!

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