According to the CDC, February is the toughest month for the cold and flu season. This is when things peak — and when more people catch something. But even if you are feeling unwell, you still need to take care of your teeth and gums.
That’s why you need to call Douglas A. Callow, D.D.S. today at 734-404-7336 and make a new appointment. Dr. Callow has been practicing right here in Michigan since 1989, giving him years of experience in helping people improve their dental health — even during cold and flu season.
Keep Your Teeth Healthy
In the meantime, here are some tips for protecting your teeth and gums even if you are sick.
Rise after taking medicine or drinking juice. Juice is packed with vitamin C, so many people drink more when ill. That’s great, but remember how juice is also packed with sugar and acid? While medicines like cough syrup might not have acid, many mask the taste of medicine with sugar. Both can lead to gum disease and cavities, so rinse your mouth with plain water after taking them.
Use cough drops sparingly. As with cough syrup, these are often full of sugar. They are also very hard, so they can damage your enamel slightly as you suck on them. Use what you need to feel better, but try to avoid cough drops when possible.
Keep drinking plain water. Your saliva helps wash away tiny particles of food that get trapped when you chew. By staying hydrated, you help your body fight the cold but also keep producing enough saliva to help protect your teeth and gums.
Rinse (not brush) if you have a stomach virus. No one likes to throw up, but an often overlooked problem is how it coats your teeth in stomach acid. This can weaken your enamel, so try to rinse thoroughly if you get sick this way.
Keep brushing and flossing like normal. With how tired the flu makes you feel, it’s easy to say no to regular dental care. Unfortunately, that will just lead to more problems down the road. Do your best to brush twice and floss once each day, even if you feel exhausted.
Reschedule appointments if you are unwell. If you are sick and have a dental visit scheduled, you should probably reschedule it by calling us at 734-404-7336. Just make sure you make another, as you really need regular cleanings and exams.
Continue With Cleanings & Exams
Again, change your appointment if you are suffering from a cold or the flu. You should be at home taking care of yourself. That said, one of the best things you can do for your smile is to get regular dental cleanings and exams. Dr. Callow is trained to use digital X-rays, intraoral cameras, and the amazing DIAGNOdent cavity detector. This means you can spot problems while they are still easier (and cheaper) to correct.