Winter air presents unusual challenges to dental health. From canker sores to cavities, dry, cold air can quickly turn an otherwise healthy mouth into a breeding ground for bacteria and sores. In addition to visiting a dentist in Palm Harbor, FL, for regular cleanings and checkups, Drs. Dan Knellinger, Stacey Verkler and Carol Bou-Sliman recommend that you take these five easy steps for optimum winter oral health.
As important as it is to take good care of your oral health during the summer months, you may need to step up your oral hygiene routine during the winter in order to combat the unique challenges caused by cold, dry air. This includes brushing at least twice daily, flossing once per day and rinsing with a non-alcoholic mouth wash.
Your toothbrush is ironically a great place for bacteria to grow, especially if you use it while you are sick. It is important to thoroughly rinse your toothbrush after each use and dry it off as much as possible.
It can be more difficult to stay hydrated during the winter than it is during the summer, simply because your body tends to feel less thirsty when it is cold. However, staying hydrated is important for your overall health, and drinking water regularly can rinse food particles and bacteria from the teeth and other oral tissues.
Sugary, acidic foods are plentiful during the holidays, so make sure you offset their harmful effects by filling your plate with nutritious items like vegetables, healthy proteins and fruits.
Cough drops are a hidden source of sugar, and sucking on them overnight is bad for your teeth. Choose sugar-free cough drops whenever possible, and remember to rinse your mouth after taking cough syrup and other medicines.
In addition to following these five steps for optimum winter dental health, be sure to visit Drs. Knellinger, Verkler and Bou-Sliman for regular checkups. Schedule your appointment today by calling (727) 228-8000.