Zero Water Filtration System

I drink water and a lot of it. Its rare to see me without one of my water bottles near by (reusable of course). I drink a lot of water not only for my health but also to help me feel good. When I am dehydrated I feel “blah” and I can’t function right. I also have a weird little lump in one of my salivary glands that swells up if I get dehydrated and it’s rather bothersome. To make sure I don’t have to deal with it I make sure to drink ample amount of water per day.

On average I’d say I drink about a gallon of water per day. Sometimes more, sometimes less.

When I was growing up we had well water. I loved how it tasted. It was also VERY cold straight from the tap. You never needed ice cubes to chill your water. It was freezing cold the moment you fill up your glass. I loved it!

I miss those days. Where we live now we have town water. Blah! I don’t like it one bit. Maybe I’m just spoiled from the well water. Our current tap water has an odd taste to it. I will drink it if I need to swallow an aspirin or something quick like that. Other then that I use the Brita water pitcher we keep in the fridge.

For the past several weeks I have traded in our Brita with a Zero Water filtration system. Its a large pitcher with a  filter that is suppose to remove 100% of detectable dissolved solids and is suppose to provide more complete filtration than conventional carbon water filters.

I always worry about what is lurking in the water that we drink. That is why I will only drink filtered or bottled water. I wouldn’t want to put my family at risk having them drink something unhealthy.

The little device next to the pitcher is the TDS monitor.

When I was learning more about the Zero Water filtration system I was curious to know what “dissolvable solids” were. In a nutshell it simply means things present in water OTHER then water. These are things that can be organic in nature (leaves, plankton, silt) to man-made things such as fertilizer, rock salts, and even sewage. Ewww! Gross!

There is a way to test water to see if there are things OTHER then water found inside. One way is is the test the “Total Dissolved Solids” using a TDS monitor. The amount expressed is in units of mg per unit volume of water (mg/L), which is also referred to as parts per million (ppm). The TDS is directly related to the purity and quality of the water. Another words the lower the number the better the water is for you to drink.

Zero Water is the only one on the market that says its TDS readings are zero, meaning that the filter captures everything “non-water” and keeps it from ending up in your drinking glass. I found this to be really intriguing and I wanted to learn more about it.

Zero Water sent me a filtration system consisting of a pitcher and filter. They also sent along a TDS monitor so I can test out Zero Water and compare it to other waters.

I can’t tell you how I excited I was to set up my own little laboratory and test the Zero Water pitcher with other water options my family might use.

I compared Zero Water to the Brita, bottled water and tap water.

First up was a glass of water from the Zero Water pitcher. I inserted the monitor to get the reading and it came to .20. I was surprised it wasn’t at zero. Interesting…

Next I tried tap water. Eww! Our tap water had a reading of 392! Oh my goodness! That is HORRIBLE!

I used a regular store bought bottle of water (generic brand) and the monitor gave me a reading of .23. That is not bad at all.

Lastly I tired a glass of water from our Brita. The Brita gave me a reading higher then the bottle water at 268. WOW! How can that be? I was shocked to learn that the Brita was almost as high as the tap water. However I did find out why. As per my husband we should have replaced the Brita filter a month ago. No wonder it is not working right. We have been using the Zero water pitcher that I totally forgot to replace the Brita filter.

I thought I would give the Zero Water another chance so I pour a fresh glass of water from the Zero Water pitcher and got a reading of .22 the second time around.

I was a bit disappointed that I didn’t see a zero, but that doesn’t mean I don’t like the Zero Water system. I like the sleek design of the pitcher. It doesn’t take up much space in the fridge. The water also tastes good to me and my family with no weird after taste or anything nasty like that.

Zero Water’s filters offer five different layers of filtration to remove the things that shouldn’t be in your drinking water.

The Zero Water system is around the same price as similar filter systems. The replacement filters are roughly $15 each were as we were paying around $9 for the Brita.

To be honest getting monitor numbers above zero on the Zero Water pitcher doesn’t bother me and it wouldn’t deter me from recommending it to others. It’s A LOT better then tap water.

The only downside so the Zero Water is that the pitcher doesn’t seem to hold as much water. It seems like we’re constantly filling it up. But that is a fair enough trade off to know that the water we are drinking is free of harmful things. It’s also a good sign that my kids are drinking enough water.

To learn more about Zero Water please visit www.ZeroWater.com. The brand is also on social media. You can find their links on the bottom of their website.

Zero Water carries a variety of products in different sizes and styles. You can find Zero Water products on their website as well as at many retail locations across the country.


*I received a free product sample in order to do this review. There was no other compensation. The opinions expressed are my own.

Don’t forget Wet Ones in your child’s lunchbox


Lunch Bag

When my kids were younger I put A LOT of thought into the lunches that I prepared for them for school. Don’t get me wrong – I still do (my son is still in high school), it’s just that my son tends to put together his lunch more so than I do. He tends to tell me what he wants for lunch and in addition he’ll take along whatever else he wants.

My kids were always packed a healthy lunch consisting of a protein, fruit, vegetable, water and whatever snack they wanted (a few cookies, a single serve size bag of chips…).

I still remember the day the school nurse from the elementary school called me at home to compliment me on the lunches I packed my kids. She told me that even being a school nurse (and knowing more about nutrition then I would), that she doesn’t pack lunches as healthy for her kids as I do mine. That was a wonderful compliment. I still can’t believe she made it a point to call me at home and tell me that. I guess I really made an impression.

Most moms make sure to pack a good lunch for their kids, but there is one thing that many moms (including myself) forget to think about – dirty hands and cafeteria tables.

Most kids know to wash their hands before they eat, but when it comes to lunchtime at school many kids forget to do that.

Think about all the surfaces they touch before eating their lunch (door knobs, stair rails, playground equipment…). If they don’t wash their hands they are putting themselves at risk for germs and illnesses.

I’m not sure if it’s like that at all schools, but in our schools the kids don’t get a long time for lunch. There is no way all kids could wash their hands before eating. The line for the bathroom would be way too long. School also don’t want a bunch of kids hanging out in the hallway. When my kids were younger the lunch monitors would only let a few kids to the bathroom at a time.

So what is a child to do? How can they wash their hands when getting to a sink with soap and hot water is not an option?

Wet Ones

I have a great idea – Wet Ones! Pack a Wet One package in with their lunch. That way a child can effectively clean their hands before eating their lunch. They can also use the wipe (AFTER they wipe their hands) to wipe off the cafeteria table where they are seated.

I wish I had thought to do that when my kids were younger. I actually used disinfecting wipes to clean off and out their lunch boxes but never did I think to pack one in with their lunch.

Wet Ones are available in individual packages. I even keep a few in my pocketbook and in my car. Wet Ones are available in 40 count canisters, 15 count travel packs and 24 count individually wrapped singles.

Wet Ones not only wash away dirt and grime, they also kill 99.9% of bacteria and other icky things.

Unlike a hand sanitizer which can irritate and dry out your skin, Wet Ones are made with an Aloe formula and they are hypoallergenic. They are also available in Fresh Scent or Citrus scents.

I tucked a few inside my son’s backpack and my daughter keeps a few in her bag that she takes to college every day. Even my husband has a few at his desk and in his car. You never know when you’ll need one.


There is plenty of room in all lunch bags/boxes for a Wet One wipe.

There is plenty of room in all lunch bags/boxes for a Wet One wipe.

Wet Ones is currently hosting a sweepstakes you might be interested in entering. HURRY! It ends at 11:59 PM (EST) on September 7, 2015. 

To enter simply upload a photo of the lunch you’ve packed for your chance to win $1,000, plus a year’s supply of Wet Ones for home and your kid’s classroom. I bet your child’s teacher would greatly appreciate that too.

To enter, or for more information, please visit WishIHadWetOnes.com.

Even if you don’t enter (but I hope you do!) you should check out the “Inspiration” section for some really fun lunch box ideas.

For more information about Wet Ones visit WetOnes.com.

Do you use Wet Ones? Do you pack them in your child’s (or your own) lunchbox?



*I received free product samples in exchange for my review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

Choosing an Eye Doctor: Things to Consider When Choosing an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist



Keeping your eyes healthy is crucial. So, selecting an eye doctor to care for your eyes is a very important decision. With so many options available, it may be daunting to start the process of choosing an eye doctor. But, if you keep a few key considerations in mind, you’ll be able to streamline the process and narrow down your choices. Take a look below for some suggestions to get started.

Optometrists vs. ophthalmologists

One of the first questions many people have is what the difference is between an optometrist and an ophthalmologist. Both are doctors trained to diagnose, treat and manage vision problems and eye diseases, but there are some distinctions between them.

Optometrist: An optometrist has a Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree. They complete a four-year college degree program followed by four years of post-graduate optometry school training. Optometrists examine eyes for health and vision issues and prescribe eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct vision. Optometrists are also licensed to prescribe medications.

Ophthalmologist: An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor (MD) or an osteopathic doctor (DO) specializing in vision and eye health. They generally complete a four-year degree followed by four years of medical school, an internship, and three years of hospital-based residency. Like optometrists, ophthalmologists are trained to perform eye tests to diagnose health and vision issues, prescribe eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct vision, and prescribe medication. Ophthalmologists, however, can also perform eye surgery.

If you have no major vision issues, choosing an optometrist or ophthalmologist to conduct a regular comprehensive eye test is purely your preference. If you have certain eye health issues such as cataracts or macular degeneration which may require surgery or close monitoring however, it is wise to choose the more highly trained ophthalmologist who is specially skilled in eye surgery and can provide a complete scope of care.

Vision insurance

Another factor that comes into play when choosing an eye doctor is vision insurance. If you have vision insurance, you need to choose an eye doctor who is covered by your provider. Most insurance plans cover doctors both in private practices and those who are located in an eyeglass retailer’s store like one you’d find in your local mall. Check your insurance documentation or call your insurance provider to find out exactly what is covered and what will be your responsibility to pay out of pocket.

If you’ve chosen between an optometrist and ophthalmologist and found doctors who are covered under your insurance plan but still can’t decide on one, it’s a good idea to ask friends, family and coworkers for recommendations. No matter what you choose, it’s imperative that you always stay up to date with your eye and vision health and schedule a comprehensive eye test at least every other year, or yearly if you have existing vision problems. 


Post is sponsored by LensCrafters.

Holiday Pet Safety


Pet Holiday Safety

The holidays are suppose to be a happy and joyful time for everyone – including your pets. However this time of year can also be a dangerous time for your pets if you are not careful and diligent about keeping them out of harm’s way.

As a pet mom I make extra certain that the holidays don’t mean a trip (or two) to the emergency vet (we already have enough vet bills). Not only that, I wouldn’t want our holiday ruined if one of our beloved pets gets seriously ill or becomes a fatality.

Here are some helpful safety tips to ensure that your furry friend is safe this holiday season.

Keep holiday plants out of reach. Some plants – especially Poinsettias, Mistletoe, Holly and Lilies) are toxic for pets if they ingest them. Even pine cones and tree needles can cause intestinal damage if swallowed. Make sure to vacuum under your tree often.

Cats love shiny, dangling things. As pretty as it is consider leaving it off your tree is better for our feline friend. Not only can they swallow the tinsel but they can also pull down the tree if it’s not secured properly, or knock down decorations which could also be a potential health hazard.

If your cat likes to climb inside your Christmas tree hanging a lemon scented car air freshener, or placing orange peels at the base of the tree could stop them. Most cats don’t like the smell of citrus.

Avoid putting lights and decorations on low branches. The last thing you want is you pup chewing through the lights and getting electrocuted or chewing up your favorite ornaments.

Cat Christmas

NEVER EVER leave your pet alone in a room with lit candles. That is a major fire hazard. Use flameless candles. They give of the same appeal but are much safer to use around pets (and small children).

If possible secure your tree. Sometimes pets might accidently bump into a tree which could cause it to fall down and injure your pet plus break many of your valuable and precious ornaments.

Use a pet friendly tree preservative if you use a real Christmas tree. Dogs and cats often will drink the water you use to keep your tree hydrated. When in doubt just use fresh, clean water to water your tree and try and keep your pet from drinking out of it. Stagnant tree water contains A LOT of bacteria which could make your pet very ill.

If you like to put edible goodies in stockings be sure to hand them up high enough so your pet cannot reach them. Edible goodies smell good to dogs and they might tear into the stocking before you do. Some foods, like chocolate, are toxic to animals and it can make the very sick.

As you are toasting to the end of the current year and welcoming in the New Year be sure to keep the cocktails out of reach. Unlike humans, pets don’t get drunk – they can get severely sick if they drink alcohol, possibly even going into respiratory failure, a coma or even dying from ingesting alcohol.

Pet's can't "party" like their human family members - Alcohol is a big no-no for pets (FYI... My cat was sleeping at the time)

Pet’s can’t “party” like their human family members – Alcohol is a big no-no for pets (FYI… My cat was sleeping at the time)

Don’t serve your pet “people food” and make sure all food is out of reach. Bones for example (turkey, ham or lamb) can splinter and get stuck in your pet’s throat or intestines. Not only that, too much people food can make our pet obese and it can upset their stomachs. I’m sure you don’t want to spend Christmas morning cleaning up dog diarrhea from you carpet.

Make sure your pet cannot get into the garbage. Grandma’s fruitcake that you toss into the garbage could contain things like raisins which are toxic for dogs. Other ingredients, like garlic, is also bad for your pet.

Make sure there are not little things lying around that could be swallowed by your pet, like button cell batteries and small toys.

The holidays might seem merry and bright to you, but a house full of strangers can be very stressful on your pet. Consider putting your pet/pets into a backroom, away from all the festivities. Not only will it make it less stressful for your pet but also safer for your guests. Frightened pets might lash out and scratch or bite a guest.

If you are having house guests this holiday season be sure to talk to them about pet safety. Make sure they don’t leave valuable lying around or things like prescription medication or dentures. You wouldn’t want Fido taking a chomp out of grandpa’s chompers.

Dog Dentures

If you live in an area that gets cold make sure that your pet keeps warm too. Even though your pet has fur doesn’t mean it can’t get affected by the elements. Be sure to keep your pet warm and cozy on Winter walks and limit their time outdoors, especially in bitter temperatures. Also, be sure to check the pads of your pets feed for rock salt. Rock salt left in their paws can burn and cause them pain.

If you use streamers and confetti to celebrate the New Year be sure to clean up immediately so that your dog or cat doesn’t eat the confetti or streamers. If the New York City Sanitation Department can clean up Times Square lightening fast after the ball drops, you can certainly get your living room vacuumed in a matter of minutes.

In case of emergencies make sure you have first aid supplies specifically made for pets. Not all vets are open during the holidays (especially on Christmas and New Year’s day). It’s important that you keep a first aid kit for your furry friend to help with minor injuries.


Dr. Emmo’s carries a line of pet friendly first aid products that are non-toxic, all natural and safe to lick. The product line includes;

Dr. Emmo’s Wound Care Spray Wash is intended to be the first of a two-step  process for the treatment of pets with minor cuts, scrapes and skin irritations.  This fine cleansing spray works to thoroughly rinse, remove and flush bacteria  in all minor pet wounds.

The second step in this wound care system is the  application of Wound Care Spray Gel to the wound site. This easy to apply gel  with its viscous formulation is intended to stick to the wound site, keeping the  wound clean and protected throughout the healing process.

The Ear Care Rinse offers immediate relief to wax build up and pesky irritations  of the ear.

Dr. Emmo’s Eye Care Wash is an antibiotic-free  formulation designed as a “one-step”, all-natural, topical eye care rinse for  use in all animal eyes. It relieves eye irritation, burning, scratching while  killing 99.9% of bacteria/germs.

Dr. Emmo’s motto is “Accidents will happen… be prepared everywhere”. That means your pet is vunlunerable to accidents 365 days out of the year, not just during the holidays.

For more information visit www.DrEmmos.com. You can also follow Dr. Emmo’s on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Do you have any special safety tips you’d like to share?

Happy Holidays from my furry friends to yours. 🙂

Holiday Pet Safety


*I was not compensated for this post. I posted this for the benefit of my site readers.

Campbell’s AdDress Your Heart Recipe Challenge (Giveaway – ends 3/6/12)

Earlier this morning I was watching the news. There was a segment on “silent heart attacks”. Mostly women experience the silent heart attacks. Many of them don’t know they are even having a heart attack. The news said 19% of women have these kinds of heart attacks and of those 19%, 15% will die by the time they get to the hospital because it would be too late.

NOT the way I wanted to start the morning. 🙁

I worry about my heart all the time. I admit that I should be doing A LOT more to take care of myself and my health. My husband does. I should be more like him. Heart disease runs in the family. His father died when he was 42 years old (my son was 11 at the time) of a massive heart attack. My mother in law had heart problems too, including bypass surgery. Because of that I have encouraged my husband to visit a cardiologist regularly. So far, so good. The doctor says he’s “ticker” is in great shape. Now I have to jump on the “heart healthy bandwagon”, so to speak.

There are more than 42 MILLION American women who suffer from some form of heart disease. Risk factors are on the rise too! Now more than ever a heart healthy diet is VERY important.

Campbell’s is taking the initiative to show people that heart healthy cooking doesn’t have to be bland or difficult to prepare. Now it’s sixth year, the Campbell’s AdDress Your Heart campaign has pledged to contribute more than $3.6 million to the American Heart Association through 2012. I think that is awesome!

At Campbell, we have a tradition of culinary excellence, and this year’s campaign builds on that legacy to support our commitment to heart health,” said Eric Christianson, Vice President, Campbell Soup Company. “We hope these delicious and easy recipes will inspire people to feel like a top chef in their own kitchen.”

For this year’s campaign AdDress Your Heart has a Cooking Challenge with put celebrity Chef Richard Blais up against Campbell’s Master Chef Thomas Griffiths. Each was asked to create a mouthwatering dish that incorporate two of Campbell’s nearly 100 heart-healthy products, all in support of the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women movement. 

Chef Blais created Spicy BouilliaBlais and Chef Griffths created the Spiced Chicken and Green Bean Salad recipe. It’s made with Campbell’s Select Harvest Healthy Request Tomato and Basil Soup (which I love on it’s own too or with rice), Pepperidge Farms Farmhouse Whole Grain White Bread (I had to substitute this because I couldn’t find it at my local grocery store), and a very delicious V8 V-Fusion Pomegranate Blueberry juice. 

The full recipe can be found on the Facebook page.

I had to substitute a few things because either my local grocery store didn’t carry it or I knew my family wouldn’t eat it (this recipe called for mushrooms and I’m the only one who likes mushrooms).

The recipe was more involved then the kids I’m used to making but it turned out really good as far as the taste. My presentation left a lot to be desired (thus the reason I don’t have a photo). I over cooked the green beans and they looked sort of funky. They tasted fine, they just didn’t look too appetizing. 🙂

It turned out really good and I have a hard time believing that it was a “heart healthy” meal. I actually was very gourmet, so so than I am used to making at home. It’s something that I will make again.

I haven’t tried the Spicy BouilliaBlais yet because it is made with Scallops and Shrimp and no one in my family will eat them except me (I love seafood). I didn’t want to make the whole thing for myself (freeze for future meals) because I’m not sure how long seafood will last in the freezer. I will have to wait to make this for when I have company.

You can also find the recipe on the Facebook page. In fact if you visit the Facebook page, www.Facebook.com/CampbellsKitchen you can watch the “AdDress Your Heart Cooking Challenge” webisodes, get these and other recipes as well as coupons for Campbell’s heart-healthy products.

Fans can vote for their favorite recipe. Each vote will trigger a donation by Campbell to the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women movement, to help fund research and eradicate heart disease. For every vote through March 1, 2012, Campbell will donate $1 to the movement, up to $625,000. That is awesome!

Campbell’s offers nearly 100 convenient, delicious foods that are certified heart-healthy by the American Heart Association (AHA). This includes all 33 Campbell’s Healthy Request soups, Low Sodium V8 100% Vegetable juices and Prego Heart Smart Italian sauces, which have been screened and verified to meet the AHA’s certification criteria to display its Heart Check mark.

To encourage you to become more “heart healthy” and to promote Campbell’s AdDress Your Heart campaign, Campbell’s has generously offered to give a lucky reader a fabulous prize package. The package will include many of the ingredients needed to make both recipes (soups, spices, juices…) AND a hand held blender and a really cool microplane (a large hand held grater). Thank you Campbell’s!

To enter please comment on what you are doing to be “heart healthy”?

For extra entries you can do any or all of the following. Please leave a separate comment for each that you have done. Extra entries are optional. 

– Subscribe to She Scribes. Both E-mail and RSS options are found on the right side bar.

– “Like” Campbell’s Kitchen on Facebook, www.Facebook.com/CampbellsKitchen.

– “Like” She Scribes on Facebook, www.Facebook.com/SheScribes.

– Follow Campbell’s Kitchen on Twitter, www.Twitter.com/CampbellKitchen.

– Follow She Scribes on Twitter, www.Twitter.com/She_Scribes and tweet about the AdDress Your Heart Campaign and/or giveaway. Please include @She_Scribes in the tweet so I can see it too. This is limited to three tweets per day.

– Share information about the AdDress Your Heart Campaign and/or giveaway with others on Facebook, Digg, Technorati and so forth. Be sure to tell me what you did and please provide a name and/or URL so I can verify.

– Leave a thoughtful comment on a non-giveaway post on She Scribes and tell me which post you commented on. There is a limit of one comment per post, but you can comment on as many posts as you want for an unlimited extra entry option.

– Post about the Campbell’s AdDress Your Heart Campaign and/or giveaway on your site and please link back to this post. Please provide the URL.

This giveaway is open to US residents only and will end on March 6, 2012 at 11:59 PM (EST). The winner will be chosen at random using a random number generator from all eligible entries. The winner will be notified via e-mail and will have three days to reply with a name, mailing address (no PO Box) and phone number (shipping purposes only). Failure to do so will result in a new winner will be chosen in their place.

Other amazing giveaways can be found on the right side bar under “Win It.”


*I received free product samples in order to do this review. There was no compenstation. The opinions expressed are entirly my own and are not influenced in any way. Campbells will be providing the prize package for the winner.

Listerine & Reach Oral Care Blogger Challenge #HealthyHabits

As a mom it’s my responsibility to ensure that my family is happy and healthy. From the time children are toddlers we need to teach them many important things including personal hygiene and oral care.

I hate to admit this but growing up my parents didn’t put much emphasis on oral care. I knew I had to brush and floss my teeth but my parents really didin’t stress upon the importance of taking care of my teeth. I can remember being little and not brushing my teeth for days at a time (EWWWW!!!!). As a result I have a mouth full of fillings. I wish I could go back in time and change things. I also wish that my parents were a bit more diligent to make sure I brushed and flossed at least twice a day instead of letting me do it whenever I felt like it.

When my children were little I was determined NOT to let them make the same mistakes that I did, especially when it came to caring for my teeth. I made sure to brush their teeth when they first came in and when they were both 18 months old I made sure to take them to the dentist every six months. I also make sure my kids brush at least twice a day and floss twice a day and use a mouth rinse at least once a day. As a result my kids have only had one cavity (my son) and it was a little one. My daughter had two fillings but they were from “pits” in her teeth, not cavities.

Here is a really sad statistic – The surgeon general reports that 51 million school hours are missed each year because of dental-related illness. WOW! That is A LOT of missed time at school when children need to be present to learn and so that they don’t fall behind in their classwork.

Sadly tooth decay is the most common chronic disease affecting children in the U.S and 50 percent of children will have a cavity or filling between the ages of 5 and 9. This is why its very important to instill good oral habits at a young age.

It’s still a bit of a struggle to get my kids to take better care of their teeth. If I leave them alone they will only brush and rinse in the AM. Neither of them would floss and I know they wouldn’t brush their teeth at night before going to bed. They are too “busy”. Ha! Not really.

If you have a hard time getting your kids to take care of their teeth here are some tips that might help.

Tips for your kids from Dr. Kaneta Lott, DDS (pediatric dentist):

–   Make oral care fun (e.g., make it a game; brush, floss and rinse to music; etc).

–   Reward their behavior (e.g., give gold stars for good oral care). Making a chart is the perfect way to accomplish this. Use a blank calendar sheet and have children mark off when they brushed, flossed and used a rinse.

–   Show, don’t tell – make oral care a family affair.

–   Involve them in their own oral care routine by providing products like Listerine Smart Rinse, which can make the daily routine more fun, provides 12-hour cavity protection for kids and strengthens teeth 99 percent better than brushing alone.

My husband grew up the same way I did. He didn’t brush or floss twice a day either. In fact he was 9 years old before he finally went to a dentist. He was afraid to go all the years leading up to that.

When I was asked if I wanted to participate in the Listerine & Reach Oral Care Blogger Challenge I jumped on the opportunity. I am hoping that I can get my entire family – including myself – on board with healthy oral care habits.

Here are some interesting facts.

Did you know?

–   Nearly 75 percent of American adults suffer from various forms of periodontal (gum) disease* and don’t know it. That is a scary thought! My dentist has never made me aware of this. I hope I’m not one of the 75%!

–   Brushing your teeth alone misses the germs in 75 percent of your mouth.WOW! That is a really horrible statistic. Seventy five percent? How can that be? Gross!

–   According to a survey conducted by the makers of Listerine and Reach, over one-third of Americans don’t eat their favorite foods or smile in photos because of dental problems like cavities, tooth pain and gingivitis. I don’t smile with my teeth. It doesn’t have to do with my teeth. I just think I look dorky when I smile and show my teeth. 🙂

–   Even sadder, 15 percent don’t kiss their loved ones. No me! I come from a huggy-kissy family. Hugs and kisses are plentiful in my family.

Dr. John Dodes, DDS offers these easy tips.

–   Clean the entire mouth.

–   Make sure you are brushing and flossing correctly.

–   Avoid sticky foods.

–   Go to the dentist twice a year.

Because so many people strive to have healthy behaviors in our everyday lives including eating right, exercising and getting enough water (as well as oral care), Listerine and Reach are proud supporters of  the American Heart Association’s My Heart. My Life initiative. Their goal is to educate and empower Americans to make positive lifestyle choices each day – including good oral care.

To learn more about the American Heart Association’s My Heart. My Life initiative, visit www.MyHeartMyLife.org.

Good oral care doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. And it doesn’t even take up much time. If you just dedicate a few MINUTES per day you can improve the quality of your teeth and avoid a lot of serious dental issues in the future. Once you get yourself into a good routine and stick with it, it will become like second nature to you.

Good oral care is also A LOT less expensive than frequent dentist visits for cavities, root canal (the worst!) and other serious issues. According to a 2010 report from the Pew Center on the States, total annual spending for dental care is expected to increase 58 percent, from $101.9 billion to $161.4 billion through 2018. Yikes! That is A LOT of money.

We spent $10,000+ on my daughter’s mouth between two rounds of braces, two different palette extenders and oral surgery. That last thing I want is to have to spend MORE $$$ to take care of her teeth. That is why I want my kids to have good oral habits NOW, before it’s too late.

Some affordable products that can help you to take care of your teeth include:

–   Reach Total Care Multi-action toothbrush. It has multi-directional bristles that thoroughly clean teeth from all directions. It can help you to remove up to 90% of plaque. 

–   Reach Total Care Floss. It’s designed for superior plaque removal and teeth whitening.

–   Listerine Rinse Antiseptic. Add this to your to your morning and nighttime routines, along with your usual brushing. It has been clinically proven to to help reduce up to 70 percent more plaque and 36 percent more gingivitis than brushing and flossing alone.

You can shop smart for all your oral care products at places like www.Walmart.com.

For more ways of improving your oral care routine, and for an educational message from professional snowboarder Gretchen Bleiler, visit www.Listerine.com (Coming Soon!).

You can also follow the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #HealthyHabits.

As part of the Listerine & Reach Oral Care Blogger Challenge my family recieved a lot of fabulous oral care products including new toothbrushes (remember to replace them often!), mouth rinses for both adults and kids and floss. I also have a handy chart for my kids. I am not going to “reward” them with stickers or what nots, but I am hopeful that SEEING the chart will remind them to brush, floss and rinse both in the morning and at night and simply not just brush alone or wait for us to nag them to brush before going to bed.

I will write an update post about how my family makes out with the challenge in a few weeks (March 16th to be exact). At that time I’ll also be doing a giveaway for a $100 Walmart gift card AND Listerine samples.


*I am being compensated for this challenge by The Motherhood. I also received free oral care products from Walmart and Johnson & Johnson. All opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced in any way.