Maintaining Your Oral Health
When you are feeling sick, it can be tempting to stop taking care of yourself. Feeling under the weather usually means your body is experiencing pain or discomfort, and the urge to stay in bed all day and put hygiene habits on “hold” can seem overwhelming.
Taking care of your mouth when you are sick, however, may be even more important than taking care of your mouth when you are healthy! Good dental hygiene habits matter every day of the year, but when your immune system has been compromised, or there is an excess of germs and bacteria in your living space due to illness, it is particularly important to practice strong oral care.
Oral Hygiene When You're Sick
Maintain regular brushing and flossing habits – While it may seem obvious, brushing and flossing, as usual, is one of the best things you can do for your oral health during times of sickness. If you are able, maintain your usual schedule of brushing at least every morning and night and flossing daily. Remember to never share your toothbrush and to never accept a shared toothbrush from a loved one, even if they are in perfect health.
Take care when dealing with the stomach flu – Just as acidic foods can damage our enamel, the stomach acids contained in vomit coat our teeth and can wreak havoc if they are spread around. Try to resist the natural urge to brush your teeth immediately after vomiting, and instead rinse with water several times or chew sugarless gum for at least thirty minutes before brushing. This will give the acids time to neutralize, which helps significantly reduce the risk of cavities.
Avoid sugary medicines and remedies – Many people immediately reach for cough drops or cough syrup at the first sign of a cold, but these products are notorious for containing huge amounts of sugar. Choose low-or-no sugar options when available, and do not keep cough drops in your mouth any longer than necessary.
Contact Our Doylestown, PA Dental Office
If you have additional questions about oral care when you are sick, contact our Doylestown, PA dental office today.