When you have a cold or the flu, taking care of your body is your top priority- and that includes your mouth. Here are some simple ways to care for your dental health when you are not feeling well:
Practice Good Hygiene
When you are sick, cover your mouth when you cough and sneeze. Don’t forget to pay attention to your toothbrush. According to the CDC, the flu virus can live on moist surfaces for 72 hours. If you use a manual brush-throw it out! If you use an electric toothbrush-change the toothbrush head.
Choose Sugar-Free Cough Drops
Read the labels when choosing a cough drop-avoid ingredients like fructose and corn syrup. Many cough drops contain sugar, and the longer you keep a sugary cough drop in your mouth, the more time cavity causing bacteria has to form on your teeth.
Stay Hydrated to Avoid Dry Mouth
When you are sick, you need plenty of fluids for many reasons. One is to prevent dry mouth. The medications you might be taking for a cold or flu- such as antihistamines, decongestants or pain relievers – can also dry out your mouth, so drink plenty of water to keep the saliva flowing.
Choose the Right Fluids
When it comes to your mouth and your body, water is always best. You may also want something to warm you up when you are sick, a cup of hot tea. The heat can soothe sore throats, stuffy noses and chest congestion.