Here are some of the useless or risky activities that we do on a daily basis:
Twirling cotton-tipped swabs in the ears
It's nearly irresistible. The use of swabs to "clean" the ears or to remove water is nearly universal. But read the label. Their manufacturers recommend that they only be used (wink, wink) on the outside of the ear. The fact is, putting a cotton tipped swab into the ear can damage the eardrum or push wax (cerumen) farther into the canal.
Using expired medications
According to a recent study, most medications last at least a little beyond their expiration dates. Check the expiration dates of any medications you use, whether over-the-counter or prescription. Throw out all expired drugs.
Eating carrots to improve vision
Carrots are a good source of vitamin A, which is important for healthy eyes. However, unless you have vitamin A deficiency, eating carrots isn't going to do anything for your vision. And eating too many carrots can turn your skin orange.
Brushing your teeth with enthusiasm
If you're in a hurry or think brushing more vigorously will get your teeth cleaner and whiter, think again. You may actually damage the teeth and gums. It's best to use only gentle pressure with a soft brush. And don't forget to floss.
Increasing exercise too much too soon
Have patience. It takes weeks or months to get out of shape; it'll take at least that long to get fit. Increase your exercise no more than 10 percent per week, in terms of speed or the weights you're using.
Starving a fever
There is simply no reason to avoid food if you have a fever as in the adage "feed a cold, starve a fever." In fact, maintaining good nutrition when you're sick with a cold or flu can help you recover.
Drinking lots of water
Going out of your way to drink when you aren't thirsty is probably unhelpful and occasionally harmful. For the average person working indoors, drinking when you are thirsty is generally all you need to do.