From Tracie: Sweet Smart Challenge Update

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Sweet Smart Challenge Update

In October, I told you we were going to take the Listerine Smart Rinse Sweet Smart Oral Care Challenge. It has been three weeks since we started, and I'm pleased to report that we have very happy teeth.
Oral Care Products from Listerine
The key to a successful brushing routine is to stop brushing before bed. This is a mistake we have been making with Katarina for a long time - we made teeth brushing part of the bedtime routine.

Most nights she starts reading in bed before bedtime actually arrives, trying to get in as many pages as she can before her light has to go out. This is a great thing, except it is easy to forget that teeth need to be brushed when your kid is already in her pajamas, cuddled up under the blankets, and heading toward sleepiness.

When one of us would remember that teeth needed to be brushed, it would inevitably end with me calling through the door for her to hurry up because it was now past bedtime.
Katarina Brushing Her Teeth
What we have learned through this challenge is there is no "hurry up" in a good oral care routine. You have to floss, brush for two minutes, and swish mouth rinse for one minute, or you aren't properly cleaning your teeth. It takes time.

So now, instead of associating the night time brushing with bedtime, we do it after dinner. It makes a big difference, and allows Katarina to take the time to care for her teeth the right way.

Bowl of Candy
This challenge couldn't have come at a better time. Especially since I hit the half-priced candy aisle at the grocery store today.

Tracie Brushing Teeth
I have to tell you about the Smart Rinse. We had not tried Smart Rinse before the challenge, so I was a little unsure how it worked. When you swish it around in your mouth (for 60 seconds), it tints any food particles and bacteria that are left in your mouth after brushing. When you spit it out in the sink, you can see those darkly tinted particles. It is good proof of how much you miss by just brushing alone.

The tinted particles in the sink are grossly awesome. I'm a little obsessed with them. Some days there are more, and some days less, but every time I have used it, I've seen the tinted particles when I spit. Even though Listerine sent me adult mouthwash, I have to admit that I've been using the Berry Shield Smart Rinse (and that Phineas and Ferb toothbrush I told you I was going to claim) for most of the challenge. Katarina loves the bubblegum flavor, and is just as obsessed with the tinted particles as I am.
Katarina Flossing
I have noticed a remarkable improvement in Katarina's teeth. I hardly ever have to send her back into the bathroom to brush again, and she has been the one reminding me to floss and rinse when I brush. She has a dentist appointment next week, and I feel pretty good that he will be impressed with her tooth care skills.

For more information about kids and oral health, and to find out how you can make a difference for a child in need, check out the National Children’s Oral Health Foundation: America’s ToothFairy.

Legal Stuff: I was provided oral care products from Johnson & Johnson and the Motherhood to help me participate in the Sweet Smart Challenge, and I was also compensated for my time. All opinions are my own, and I was not required to say nice things.


  1. good info Tracy...wishing you a beautiful Friday out there.....Stay strong in Him....

    1. Thanks, Sarah. I'm wishing the same for you (but on a Monday).

  2. Thanks for the update! Glad to know I'm not the only one who thinks the tinted food particles removed by the SmartRinse is super cool! ;) Looks like Katarina rocked this challenge.

    1. She surely did!

      That SmartRinse is crazy awesome.

  3. I think I need to move it to after dinner too. We rush before bedtime to get it done.

    1. Yep. That is what was happening to us. It was like I was sabotaging my own plan to have her brush her teeth.

  4. Need that Smart Rinse - for myself and the kids! I'm a terrible example.

    1. I'm not always a great example either. Having a chart on the refrigerator staring at me with blank spaces was a great motivator to remember.