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How to Take Proper Care of Your Mouth During Cold and Flu Season

Flu

Maintaining a daily hygienic routine in today’s expedient, business-driven atmosphere is difficult enough, but what happens to that consistency when we catch a severe cold or the flu? For most people, odds are that daily hygienic discipline takes a back seat until their symptoms have subsided. While this route may feel optimal in the short term, it is not realistically viable for a healthy, cavity-free smile. We all know that constantly sneezing, vomiting, and coughing is quite fatiguing, but it’s also extremely detrimental to your oral health. Coughing rouses mucus as vomiting does with stomach acids. Combined, these factors can wreak havoc on your mouth. For this reason, it is essential that one maintain their normal hygienic routine throughout their sickness. Here to offer some advice on just how to do that is a brief list concerning how to take care of your mouth during cold and flu season.

Avoid Sugar

Steering clear of sugar is essential to keeping your mouth bacteria-free on a normal day, but its importance is compounded when one is battling a cold or flu. Normally, when avoiding sugar, one abstains from soda and similar beverages. But did you know that many cough medicines and throat lozenges also contain concentrated amounts of sugar? Popping these in your mouth or imbibing them can compound the bacteria in your mouth by giving them a robust meal of sugar to feed on. Yikes!

Don’t Neglect Mouth Wash

As mentioned above, routine coughing and/or vomiting promotes excess bacteria throughout the oral cavity. Fortunately, there is an easy way to tackle this issue: hydrogen peroxide. However, if you do not have any on hand then any mouthwash will do, just ensure that anything you gargle has been approved by the ADA.

Maintain Your Routine

Let’s be honest, having the flu is a tiresome endeavor that we may be inclined to attempt to sleep off. However, maintaining one’s daily routine of brushing, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash is essential. You may also want to consider brushing your tongue, as this is the main area bacteria tend to reside. Maintaining a consistent routine is an excellent means of defending against current and future sicknesses by minimizing the amount of bacteria present through the duration of your recovery.

Stay Hydrated

When you have the flu or a cold, your body is fighting to rid itself of the illness. Throughout this process, it is expending a lot of energy, resulting in severe dehydration. While maintaining adequate hydration minimizes congestion and aids healing, it will also help you feel better in the moment by increasing the amount of saliva in your mouth.

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