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The Secret To Making Bold Moves

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May 5 2016, Published 3:30 a.m. ET

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When it comes to making bold moves in your life and career there’s one key that isn’t often discussed. Aside from preparation, confidence and putting the work in, a bright smile and fresh breath can be an important differentiator in terms of how people receive you.

Smiles signal happiness, enthusiasm and confidence. From job interviews to those who occupy positions of power, body language is important. But when it comes to your smile and your breath, it’s not just about vanity, or aesthetics as I learned during a recent visit to the LISTERINE® Lab.

According to Dr. Lee Gause, we’re in the middle of a dental crisis. 100 percent of adults have had gingivitis at some point in their lives. Gingivitis pretty much opens the gates to a number of oral health problems including periodontitis which weakens the structure that holds your teeth in place. If left untreated, eventually it can cause you to loose your teeth.

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bring out the bold

One sign that you have this disease is bleeding of the gums. If you ever see blood when you rinse after brushing your teeth, that is not normal. But it can be prevented and treated by properly taking care of your oral health. This means doing more than just brushing twice a day. Brushing alone misses 75 percent of your mouth. Gause, recommends using an antiseptic mouthwash like LISTERINE® which is clinically proven to clean virtually 100 percent of the mouth.

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“The good thing about LISTERINE® is that it has really solid science behind it,” Gause shared with us referring to the robust amount of experiments and studies in support of the effectiveness of the mouthwash. I got a chance to see the science behind it first hand. Last week, the company organized a trip with a select group of content creators and bloggers to see the bold science that goes into making the mouthwash.

We also learned about the LISTERINE®  which they’re sharing with the world through the BRING OUT THE BOLD™ campaign.

For years, they only studied their formula and the bacteria in our mouths, but this time around they decided to study the lifestyles of the people whose mouths they were treating. Using a sample size of 6,000 LISTERINE® found that their users are bold. According to the study, LISTERINE® users are more likely to do things like quit their job in pursuit of their dream, book a trip and leave on the same day, eat spicy foods etc.

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“The amount of science behind this product is remarkable,” shared Research and Clinical Strategy, Dr. Michael Lynch during a talk back session where we learned that seven to eight hundred species of bacteria live in our mouths. Dr. Lynch and Dr. Gause shared a ton of facts including how bad breath mints are (essentially you’re bathing your teeth in a sugar bath and it feeds the bad germs making things worse).

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I was particularly curious about the impact of the modern-day workplace on our oral health. Essentially many of us are working remotely, or if we are in an office, we exist in a time where we g-chat the person next to us instead of getting up and speaking to them. With that said, our mouths are closed for a majority of the day. On top of that, we likely have a cup of coffee that we’re sipping on throughout the day. As I suspected, this is horrible for our mouths and oral health although there’s no direct research on it (yet). But Dr. Lynch compared the scenario to the environment that’s created when we are asleep. He advises that swallowing helps and do not sip on the same cup of coffee all day. Picture this: the bacteria in your mouth thrives in a warm, dark and wet environment and the bacteria feeds off of the sugar from drinks like coffee and soda. Pretty disgusting, right?

Luckily, in Her Agenda’s office we have a bottle of LISTERINE® in every bathroom. Before this trip, I thought of it as something nice to have. Now I realize how necessary it is not just for a quick refresh but for the improvement of my oral health. Using mouthwash has become an essential part of my oral routine.

After the informative talk with Dr. Lynch and Dr. Gause, we met principal scientist Tara Fourre who walked us through the lab to show us their research process, and some of the experiments they perform.

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Tara - lead scientist LISTERNE

The experience was fully immersive complete with lab coats and goggles. We saw 3D and virtual reality versions of the bacteria that live in our mouths and how using mouthwash makes a major difference.

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Listerene Lab visit

Fourre led us in a swish test to offer a more up close and personal perspective. The lab collected a sample of our saliva before, and after brushing and also after using LISTERINE® Antiseptic Mouthwash. In case you didn’t know, you need to swish for at least 30 seconds, which seems short, but it’s longer than you might think when you actually time it.

Here are my official results:

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Rhonesha Byng - Swish Test Results
swish test listerene
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So what is it about LISTERINE® that attracts the bold? Maybe it’s the four essential oils menthol, thymol, methyl salicylate, and eucalyptol? (By the way, the formula has pretty much stayed the same over the course of over 130 years). The tingling feeling that you get certainly takes a certain level of courage.

For the experts we spoke with that day, we asked them the boldest thing they’d done in their careers. Dr. Lynch shared that it was asking out one of his patients, and his bold move turned out to be the right move because they’ve now been married three and half years.

For Dr. Gause, he focuses his boldness on making sure he’s using his influence in the right way within his profession. He started Smile Design Gallery where he offers free dentistry to the uninsured. He utilizes art to fund the initiative and his dentist office is also a former art gallery.

“Part of the reason I have this amazing practice is because I take care of the people who make the city what it is,” he explained. Ultimately, he wants to redefine what a dentist looks like.

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LISTERENE BringOutTheBold

What about you? What’s the boldest move you’ve made in your professional life? Share with us for a chance to win a package from LISTERINE®. Use hashtag #BringOutTheBold and tag @HerAgenda.

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[Editor’s note: this post is sponsored by LISTERINE®. Thoughts and opinions are our own.]

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By: Rhonesha Byng

Rhonesha Byng is the founder and CEO of Her Agenda— a digital media platform bridging the gap between ambition and achievement for millennial women. The site provides access to content and community that gives millennial women access to information and inspiration to help them get started or to move to the next level of their career. Rhonesha is an Emmy award-winning journalist and entrepreneur whose philosophy in life is established by her acronym of N.E.S.H.A. No one Ever Slows Her Agenda. This motto served as the inspiration for Her Agenda. Rhonesha was named to the 2017 Forbes 30 Under 30 list and ESSENCE magazine named her among 50 Founders To Watch. Rhonesha is also the co-founder of the newly formed nonprofit org The Black Owned Media Equity and Sustainability Institute (BOMESI).

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