5 Best New Year’s Resolutions Toward Long-Term Health

New Year's resolutions that will last

5 Self Care Tips to Prioritize in 2022 for Long Term Health

Want to make New Year resolutions you can actually stick to in 2022? Instead of thinking of things you need or changes you must make to have a “better” you, why not focus on doing more of the things that not only make you feel good but also have a long-lasting effect on your overall health? Here are a couple of ideas from us to help you get started: 

1. Make Resolutions to invest in your health.

If the current pandemic has taught us anything it’s that you have to be ready for the unpredictable. This is even more true when it comes to medical costs. After all, no one ever plans to get sick or spend weeks (or even months) in a hospital. Such unexpected health care costs and unplanned medical treatments can challenge even the most financially prepared families. Through health savings accounts (HSAs) and flexible health insurance, you can invest in your health and protect your finances. Anytime you have a qualified medical expense like deductibles, co-payments, prescription drug costs, and out-of-pocket dental and vision expenses, you won’t have to pay out of pocket or tap into your savings. You’ll simply make tax-free withdrawals from your HSA to pay for them. Just remember, you’ll get the most bang for your HSA buck if you pay for current medical expenses through your insurance or on an out-of-pocket basis and allow the money in your health savings account to grow tax-free. 

2. Take care of your mental health.

We’re lucky to live in a world where the importance of treating your mental health as you would your physical health is a pretty well-accepted principle. But when it comes to actually being mentally “healthy,” there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy. For many, having a supportive system of friends and family can help when dealing with the daily stresses of life. Others may find having a professional therapist or a confidant just listening to you can help you cope with a problem you’ve been carrying around in your head for a while. Joining a support group and engaging in activities like art, yoga, or reading are also other self-care strategies known to have positive benefits on long-term mental health. 

3. Make resolutions to practice preventative care.

Exercising, making small changes to improve your diet, and taking good care of your teeth and gums may all take a little bit of effort. Adding more movement into your life either by going on a 20-minute walk before starting your day or parking your car at the furthest point from the entrance, can help not only keep your body at a healthy weight, but also lower the risk of developing some diseases. Eating a salad before dinner, filling your plate with vegetables first, and replacing sugary drinks with lemon-infused water are also other ways to make sure your body gets the most nourishment without damaging your health in the process. And through regular visits to a dentist, you’ll learn what changes you need to make to your oral routine or what fillings, crowns, and implants you’ll need to give you the best dental health possible. When you practice preventative care, it makes it that much easier for you to also take care of your family and friends around you.

4. Boost your good feelings (oxytocin) hormone.

You know that warm fuzzy feeling you get when you hug your child, pet your dog, or kiss a loved one? That’s oxytocin at work. This hormone not only impacts your day-to-day emotions, but it also affects the functioning of your brain and nervous system. In fact, increasing the levels of oxytocin in your body reduces the release of cortisol, your body’s main stress hormone, accelerates healing, promotes creativity, and improves self-perception in social situations, which increases the enjoyment of social interactions. So the next time you feel sore after a tough workout or are having a hard time figuring out a problem at work, don’t discount the power of snuggling with your pet or participating in family game night. 

5. Make resolutions to get regular checkups.

Your dentist is a very important part of your New Year’s resolutions toward long-term health. By asking questions about your current medical treatments and learning about any prescriptions or recreational drugs you take, your dental professional will have a solid foundation to offer advice on how to better take care of your oral health. You’ll also get screened for abnormalities in your mouth’s soft tissues during any routine dental appointments with us so we can catch any cancers of the mouth and throat at their earliest stages when it’s easier (and less painful) to treat. And if one of the promises you’ve made to yourself is to make some changes to your smile, we’re here to help! We believe it’s never too late to restore your smile to its youthful function and beauty. We look forward to working with you toward your happiest and healthiest smile.