The constant change in weather has made us more vulnerable to getting sick. The last thing you want to worry about when you’re sick is your dental health. Unfortunately, your teeth can be extra vulnerable when cold and flu season strike. If you find yourself under the weather, read these helpful tips to protect your teeth!
Watch Out For Dry Mouth
You know that feeling when your nose is so stuffy you can’t breathe out of it even if you tried? We all have the potential to become mouth breathers when we’re sick, especially at night. Consequently, our mouths become dry, creating the perfect environment for bacteria to thrive.
Some of the medications we take when we’re sick–such as antihistamines, decongestants and pain relievers–can cause or worsen dry mouth. Without as much saliva to fend off bacteria in our mouths, our risk of tooth decay goes way up! Protect yourself from cavities and make sure to drink plenty of water when you’re sick.
Being sick can often cause bad breath because of congestion and dry mouth.
Learn more about the causes of bad breath here!
We all know how bad sugar can be for our teeth. But it’s not usually something we think about when we’re in dire need of a cough drop! Next time you buy cough drops, go sugar-free. Sucking on a sugary cough drop all day is just the same as sucking on a jolly rancher or other sugary candy, and it can do just as much damage to your pearly whites.
Stick With Water
Orange juice, sports drinks, or tea sweetened with honey or sugar, are all beverages we want when we’re sick. Just remember to rinse your mouth with water after drinking them, to protect your teeth from all that sugar.
Water will also be your best friend if you have the stomach flu. Vomit is very acidic and can wreak havoc on your teeth. Instead of trying to brush your teeth immediately after, just rinse your mouth out with water and make sure you stay hydrated!
Keep Up On Oral Hygiene
Remembering to brush and floss your teeth on a normal day is easy; in the morning when you wake up and at night before going to bed! When you’re sick, the days and nights often run together as you try to rest and recuperate. Losing that sense of routine can be bad news for your teeth, especially if you are forgetting to take proper care of them.
You may be surprised to know, but brushing your teeth may actually make you feel better! The health and cleanliness of our mouth can have an immense effect on our overall sense of well-being. When your mouth is clean, you feel refreshed and rejuvenated. So, don’t forget to keep up on your oral hygiene routine, even when you’re not feeling so hot.
Only one more month of winter, keep up with your oral hygiene! You’ve got this!
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.