Flu season is upon us! So today we thought we'd share some ways to protect your dental health while you're fighting off cold and flu germs.
Avoid acidic drinks as much as possible.
Many people drink more orange juice and soda (such as ginger ale) when they're sick. You can reduce the effect of acidic drinks on your teeth by drinking them quickly and then rinsing your mouth out with water when you're finished.
Don't neglect your daily dental care.
When you're sick, the first thing on your mind is getting better, not brushing and flossing your teeth. However, by taking just a few minutes each day to care for your teeth, you can prevent tartar from building up.
Use medications wisely and consult your dentist or physician for serious aches and pains.
If you've got a cold and your sinuses are congested, you can sometimes feel the pain in your teeth and gums because the maxillary sinus is located right above your upper back teeth.
Make sure to drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
Your mouth gets dry when you're sick because you breathe through it more than usual when your nose is stuffed up, and when you're coughing a lot. A dry mouth can't buffer acids as well or rinse sugar off of teeth, contributing to tooth decay.
Don't let potentially harmful substances linger on your teeth. Rinse often with water!
Your stomach is the most acidic place in your body and when you vomit, the contents of it can dissolve your teeth. After you vomit, the best thing to do for your teeth is to rinse your mouth out with water. You might want to brush your teeth to remove the acidic taste, but brushing can damage the enamel because it's already been weakened by the exposure to your stomach acid. Also, be aware that cough syrups and cough drops have sugar, which can stick to your teeth and result in cavities. Luckily, you can use sugar-free cough drops to help reduce sugar damage.