It’s a plain fact that our skin, face and body can feel the impact when the cooler months swoop in. The cold temperatures combined with harsh winds and dry air triggers uncomfortable dry skin that can quickly turn painful.
Exposing to the cold for months can also cause a range of oral health issues. Keep your mouth and lips protected from these unpleasant ailments with these essential oral health tips for WINTER!
- Flu/cold remedies and your teeth
At some point over winter season, most people will inevitably catch a cold or flu. Something you may not consider is the impact of your throat lozenges, cough medicine, lemon drinks and juices on your dental health.
These cold and flu remedies often contain sugar or acids which can cause cavities and tooth decay. It’s important to try to choose sugar free alternatives and avoid brushing your teeth immediately after eating or drinking something acidic, which can wear down the enamel on your teeth more quickly than usual. Wait at least 30-60 minutes before brushing your teeth, and instead rinse your mouth with water and chew on gum to stimulate saliva in the meantime.
Maintaining your regular oral hygiene routine by brushing and flossing daily can assist in removing the bacteria that can worsen a sore throat or a blocked nose, as well as prevent decay. When you’re well again, don’t forget to replace your toothbrush as it can still contain the bacteria from when you were sick!
Cold sores are small blisters that are usually found on the lips. They are highly contagious and flare up for numerous reasons including stress, fatigue, and cold weather.
To prevent cold sores, regularly wash your hands and try to have minimal skin-to-skin contact with people outside. Keep your lips moisturized using a lip balm to ward off the sores.
You tend to see canker sores during dry winter months due to exposure of harsh elements. These can be aggravated by acidic or spicy foods. Canker sores appear as white sores inside the mouth. Luckily, they aren’t usually contagious.
Help alleviate the pain of canker sores by rinsing your mouth out with a mixture of warm and salt several times a day.
Your mouth is almost always exposed to the cold elements when outside. Cold weather can quickly dry the soft skin on your lips, causing them to crack, redden, and itch. Dry lips can be both irritating and painful.
To stop dry lips from occurring, be sure to regularly apply a quality lip balm throughout the day. Drinking plenty of water can also keep your skin hydrated and keep chapped lips at bay.
- Tooth sensitivity to the cold
Sensitive teeth are a common complaint. Discomfort can occur from consuming hot or cold liquids as well as breathing in cold air in winter.
Relieve the discomfort of tooth sensitivity by purchasing a toothpaste specially formulated for sensitive teeth. You should also switch to a toothbrush with soft bristles and ensure you brush carefully, without exerting too much pressure on the teeth and gums.
These tips will help you navigate the cooler months, keeping yourself and your teeth in their best condition!