Protect Your Child’s Oral Health from Flu Season

January 21, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — treehouse @ 6:29 pm

Young girl blowing her nose in a tissueShorter days and chilly weather kick off cold and flu season. While you promote handwashing and disinfecting germy surfaces, you can’t always stop your little one from getting a case of the sniffles. You turn to home remedies and OTC medications to combat your child’s symptoms. Although throat lozenges and cough syrup might help keep them comfortable, they can affect their oral health. Here’s how to keep their mouth healthy while battling cold and flu season.

1. No Brushing After Vomiting

Your little one might reach for their toothbrush after a bout of vomiting, but they shouldn’t brush right away. Their stomach acid will weaken their enamel temporarily. Instead, have them rinse their mouth with water and wait about 30 minutes before brushing their teeth.

2. Choose Sugar-Free Medications

Many cold medicines contain sweeteners and fun flavors. This will bathe their teeth in cavity-causing residue that can lead to tooth decay. Throat lozenges are especially harmful because your child must hold them in their mouth for several minutes for it to dissolve. Their teeth are exposed to sugary residue for longer. It’s better to choose sugar-free options. Your little one should always rinse their mouth after taking any medications.

3. Combat Nasal Congestion

A stuffy or running nose can cause your child to breathe through their mouth, which can make it dry. A dry mouth isn’t just uncomfortable. It’s a great environment for oral bacteria growth. Use nasal decongestants to keep their airway open. 

4. Keep Them Hydrated

Your child might not feel like eating or drinking, but they must stay hydrated. Avoid carbonated or sugary drinks, including fruit juice and sports drinks. Instead, offer your little one water, broth, and soup to keep them nourished and hydrated. They’ll be on the mend and their mouth will be kept moist and healthy. 

5. Follow Their Oral Hygiene Routine

Even if your child is feeling under the weather, they must continue to brush and floss. If they don’t feel like getting out of bed, place their toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, and a cup of water by their bedside.

Children often get sick at the worst times. If it’s right before their semi-annual cleaning and checkup, don’t worry. Contact their dentist and explain their symptoms. Their dentist may recommend rescheduling their appointment until they are feeling better. 

About Dr. Adi Davidyan

Dr. Davidyan achieved his dental degree from the Tufts University School of Dentistry and has continued his education in many specialties, like orthodontics and dentofacial orthopedics. He is passionate about creating generations of healthy, confident smiles. Request an appointment through his website or contact his office.

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