It is always vital to take good care of your oral health, but it is particularly important during the winter months. There are steps you can take that can help prevent you from getting the ubiquitous cold or flu that is making its way around. If you do come down with some of the common ailments of the season, here are some steps to ensure you are as comfortable as possible and return to a healthy state quickly.
Manage Canker or Cold Sores
Canker sores can be a result of overindulgence in acidic and spicy treats, so try to limit your intake of these types of food to stay safe. If you are already dealing with one, rinse your mouth with a half-cup of water plus one teaspoon of salt. This cleans out the sores, leading to swifter healing.
Cold sores can be a product of getting too much sun and repeat exposure can exacerbate the issue. Make sure the skin surrounding your mouth is protected with sunscreen when you spend time outdoors. Wash your hands regularly to prevent bacterial spreading and attempt to manage your stress level, which can otherwise be a contributing factor to breakouts.
If You Catch a Cold or the Flu:
Do Not Be Lax About Oral Care
When you are sick, any physical activity can seem daunting - and getting up to brush and floss is no exception. However, it is essential to continue to practice good brushing and flossing during this time.
Congestion is common if you have a cold or flu, leading to mouth breathing. This, plus decreased saliva production when you sleep, results in an extra-friendly environment for bacterial growth. Dry mouth can occur, increasing the risk for cavities. To prevent this, make sure to drink lots of water.
Replace Your Toothbrush
When you are recovered from an illness, swap out your toothbrush to prevent re-infection.
Rinse With Water
Post-vomiting or after ingesting cough drops, cough syrup, cold medicine or acidic beverages, make sure to rinse your mouth with water. Cough drops are commonly sugar-filled, posing hazards for your mouth and teeth. Try the sugar-free variety of those when possible.
Call the office of Dr. William Gielincki, a top prosthodontist in Jacksonville, FL today at (904) 688-5299, to discuss more ways to keep your oral health in good shape this winter.