The coronavirus (COVID-19) has disrupted our lives in many ways. Many of us are now working from home, homeschooling, and trying to keep our loved ones safe. We’ve had to create and adjust to new routines.
Even though we may feel like we don’t have control over a lot of things, we do have control over how we care for our mouth and teeth. Here are some tips to take care of your dental health while staying at home. These tips apply to everyone – kids, adults, and seniors.
Brush at Least Twice a Day
Brush your teeth when you wake up and before you go to bed. Make sure you use a soft-bristled brush, use toothpaste with fluoride, and brush for at least two minutes. It’s also a good idea to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds before and after you pick up your toothbrush to help stop the spread of harmful bacteria and viruses.
Floss to Clean in Between Your Teeth
It’s important to make sure that all the surfaces of your teeth are cleaned. Brushing alone can’t reach the spaces between your teeth where food particles can get stuck. Flossing helps remove the bacteria and plaque hiding in those places your toothbrush can’t reach. If you can’t floss, it’s OK to use a small interdental pick or brush.
Limit Snacking on Sugary Foods and Drinks
Daily brushing and flossing are essential for a healthy smile, but nutrition also plays an important role in your dental health. Since we aren’t driving to work or spending time taking the kids to extracurricular activities, many of us find ourselves with more time on our hands. To fill that time, we might resort to snacking more often or baking yummy treats and sweets. Remember that poor nutrition can lead to gum disease, tooth decay, and cavities, and lower your immunity. Try to limit snacking, especially snacks high in sugar and acids. When you do snack, choose foods that are low in sugar and are not hard or sticky. Instead, choose nutritious foods like raw vegetables, nuts, plain yogurt, and popcorn. Proper nutrition with a balanced diet of nutritious foods promotes healthy teeth and gums.
Mouthwash isn’t a replacement for brushing, but it can still be helpful. It helps prevent decay by reducing the amount of acid and food particles left in your mouth after you eat. If you can’t brush after every meal, then swish with mouthwash for at least 30 seconds. Be sure not to eat or drink anything for at least 30 minutes after rising. If you can’t rinse with mouthwash, you can rinse with plain water.
Be Careful With Your Braces
To reduce the risk of damaging your braces, try to stick to the advice you were given at the start of your treatment regarding cleaning and taking care of your braces. Avoid eating sugary, hard, and sticky foods. Brace brackets can come off easier than you think. The gentler you can be, the fewer problems you’re likely to have.
What to Do If You Have a Dental Emergency
The best way to prevent dental emergencies is to stay proactive in your oral care. However, we know that accidents do happen. Here are some tips to help you cope quickly and calmly with a dental emergency.
If you have an emergency, don’t panic. We are still available to help. Some things can be handled over the phone, so give us a call at (904) 786-5850 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If it is more serious, we are open for emergency only appointments.
Remember that we are here for you and we will get through this together.