Caring for Your Teeth When You’re Sick

A sore throat, stuffy nose, and that awful achy feeling; cold and flu season is here. Caring for your teeth when you’re sick can feel like a lot of extra effort so here are some tips to keep it simple and easy to maintain good dental health.

Get a Fresh Toothbrush

Toothbrushes often stay moist between uses which makes them the perfect environment for germs to stick around long after you get well. If you’re feeling under the weather, it’s always best to replace your toothbrush with a fresh one. Make sure to store your new toothbrush properly so that it can dry out as much as possible between uses and so that it doesn’t come in contact with other family or household members’ toothbrushes.

Stick with Sugar-Free

It’s common for cold and flu medications, cough syrups, flavored electrolyte drinks, and other popular remedies, including natural ones, to contain high amounts of sugar, so be sure to check the ingredient labels. Caring for your teeth when you’re sick can be as simple as making sure to use sugar-free options.

Drink Lots of Fluids

Drinking lots of fluids can not only help to speed up your recovery by flushing the germs and congestion out of your system quicker, but it’s also super important to stay well-hydrated because it helps to promote healthy saliva production. Saliva is your body’s natural defense against cavities and many types of sickness can interfere with that by causing sinus pressure that leads to the need to breathe through your mouth. Just make sure to drink fluids without added sugar. Water, tea, and broths are all excellent choices for both your dental health and your whole body health.

Use Salt Water

Salt water has natural antiseptic, healing, and soothing properties when used as a mouth rinse, so it’s no surprise that many doctors recommend gargling with salt water for natural relief when you’re suffering from a sore throat. To make a salt water solution for gargling, dissolve 1 tablespoon of salt in a glass of warm water. Use as often as needed.

Brush Your Teeth

It may feel difficult to muster up the energy to practice oral hygiene when you’re sick, but caring for your teeth when you’re sick is important because it can make a big difference for your overall health. Don’t worry about doing anything fancy for your teeth, just try to make sure to brush your teeth thoroughly each day. As soon as you feel better, you’ll be back to your normal routine, but doing the best you can while you’re sick can help a great deal to avoid long-term dental issues. Once you’ve brushed well, make sure to cozy up with a blanket and your favorite book or tv show and get well soon!

Call our St. Helena Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.

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