Cold and flu season is in full swing, and if you happen to fall ill, it is essential to stay on top of your dental hygiene. It can be a simple thing to forget to do when you’re sick, but it may help you start to feel better sooner. Here are three dental hygiene tips to keep in mind when you’re sick.

Practicing Good Hygiene

It can be tough to control the spread of germs when you’re sick, but necessary things to try to prevent them from spreading, like covering your mouth when you have to cough or sneeze, are essential. According to the CDC, germs can live on some surfaces for up to 48 hours. Cleaning your mouth of bacteria at least twice a day is crucial to maintaining good dental hygiene, even when you aren’t sick. It is also best practice to not share your toothbrush at any time.

Picking the Best Cough Drops

Everyone’s favorite cough drops are the ones that taste like candy. However, these aren’t the best for your teeth. Cough drops can soothe a sore throat and relieve your cough but sucking on too many sugary drops can backfire by causing cavities. When shopping for cough drops, you should look for the bag labeled sugar-free. When we’re sick, most of us are guilty of buying the cough drops that taste best but being aware of the sugar in these drops and opting for the sugar-free version can benefit your dental hygiene down the road.

Staying Hydrated is Key

Water, water and more water. You can never drink too much water, especially when you’re sick. Staying hydrated can stop your mouth from drying out and causing cavities. Some medications can even cause dry mouth, so drinking plenty of water and consuming sugar-free cough drops should help prevent it.

Throwing away your toothbrush after you have been sick isn’t necessary unless you have a weak immune system. The chances you’ll become ill again from your toothbrush are very low. If you do become sick and start vomiting, it is best NOT to brush your teeth right way. Rinse your mouth with water and then brush about 30 minutes later. Cold and flu season is never fun but practicing good dental hygiene can help prevent the spread of germs. For more information, contact your North Texas dentist today!

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