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How would you rank your oral health care? Would you say you’re doing enough to keep your smile safe throughout the year from all oral health hazards and dental damage risks that arise? Although we often think about oral accidents and injuries such as blunt trauma or dental erosion that may arise due to harmful acids in your mouth, we fail to take into consideration the issues associated with catching a cold or the flu. If you do end up sick, you may be immobilized and not be able to care for your teeth as you probably need to. However, there are methods you can use to help ensure your smile can survive and thrive even after these harsh times.

If you ever find yourself catching a cold or the flu, make sure you are hydrating yourself properly and giving your body a chance to recover. However, do not neglect your oral health care at this time, as it still needs to be cared for as well. This includes making sure your teeth are cleaned and free of debris. If for any reason there is debris, use safe and effective tools to remove it. If you find yourself vomiting, your mouth will contain harmful acids that have traveled up from your stomach. Saliva can help neutralize these acids.

If you are unaware of the benefits of saliva, it is important to make sure your mouth is always capable of producing enough of it. If you take any medications while you’re sick, be aware of any dry mouth side effects. If dry mouth occurs, you may be extra susceptible to dental damage due to a downturn in saliva. This is because saliva is needed to help wash away food debris, neutralize heavy acids, and even contribute to a rise in disease-fighting substances in your mouth.

Furthermore, exercise caution if you are using cough drops. Cough drops may increase your risks of chipping and cracking your teeth. In addition, they are often laden with sugars which can increase the risk of dental erosion. Thus, always make sure to avoid biting your cough drops and look for ones that are sugar-free.

Drs. Petchalonis and Balasubramanian at Petchalonis Dental & Associates are here for you. To come see us at our dentist office in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, please call us at 215-732-3350 to schedule an appointment. We look forward to keeping your oral health in pristine condition.