With winter just around the corner we often neglect the importance of maintaining our oral health during the cold season. We may not realise all of the possible harsh effects that can happen to our lips, cheeks, teeth and gums!
Just as maintaining our skin and hair during the winter months is critical, having consistent oral care is just as important. Battle winter with our 9 dental tips in maintaining a healthy mouth and smile.
Strengthen your immune system:
1. Winter is the most common season for boosting our immune system to combat and fight off any illnesses to avoid getting sick. However, a weak immune system is also a catalyst for inflammation of gums and mouth infections. Did you know most of the throat lollies and cough syrups are filled with sugar or are very acidic? This causes cavities, decay and damages your tooth enamel. Make sure if you are taking these medicines to be constantly brushing and flossing your teeth to fight any bacteria and possible cavities!
2. Vitamin C tablets are a great substitute as it helps the body to produce collagen for healthy gums. It keeps your blood vessels healthy, building and strengthening your immune system.
3. Don’t forget to throw away your old toothbrush approximately every three to four months, especially if you’ve caught the flu!
Cold sores & Dry Lips:
4. Battling the harsh winter wind and sun can cause a break out of cold sores and canker sores. To ensure areas around your mouth are protected, try using moisturisers or products that include SPF protection.
5. Washing your hands regularly will protect you from the winter flu and any bacteria entering in or around the mouth.
6. Indulging in acidic or spicy winter treats such as cider, can also cause canker sores. If you are looking for a remedy, swishing a warm cup of water with a teaspoon of salt helps to clean the infected area. Alcohol-free solutions including mouthwash are another great way to ease the pain and speed the healing process.
7. Don’t forget to use lip balm to avoid chapped lips to secure and lock in moisture!
8. Sensitive teeth becomes even more of a struggle and hassle especially during winter! Cold temperatures and cooling winds will leave you feeling sore if you generally experience sharp pains from tooth sensitivity. Brushing your teeth with a desensitising toothpaste will ease the irritation from extreme temperatures, so you can enjoy icy beverages during the cooler months.
Importance of Hydration:
9. During winter tea, coffee and hot chocolate become our best friend and winter warmers. Rarely do we naturally have the urge to consume multiple litres of water like we normally do during the hot summer months. However, staying hydrated is crucial to rinsing off sugar and acid from your teeth (from the hot beverages), hydrates our lips and maintain moisture in our mouths to keep unwanted bacteria from developing.
Follow these steps to keep your oral health in the best condition possible during this cold season! Don’t forget to regularly schedule your 6 month check up for a happier and healthier smile.