Dental Hygiene At Home During The Coronavirus Pandemic

mother teaching young son to brush his teethPeople across the globe are doing their part during the COVID-19 pandemic by staying home, wearing masks when they go out, and practicing social distancing. For some, this means delaying regular visits to the dentist for checkups and cleanings. During this challenging time, our team at Dexter Family Dentistry is here for you!

Our dentists offer some oral hygiene tips that can help keep your teeth and mouth healthy until you’re able to visit us for routine preventative care. If you do want or need to schedule an appointment, our office is open and you can rest assured that we’re taking all necessary precautions to keep our patients and staff safe.

Practice Good General Hygiene

As per the CDC guidelines, washing your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. Avoid touching your face and make sure to wash your hands before and after brushing or flossing your teeth, eating, and after you return home from being away. Using hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol also helps stop the spread of coronavirus. Cleaning high-contact surfaces in your home with a disinfectant cleaner daily is a must.  By following these simple rules, you can minimize the spread of disease and maximize your chance of remaining healthy!

Proper Dental Hygiene At Home

Maintaining good oral hygiene at home is even more important during this crisis to help you and your family stay healthy. Brushing your teeth at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and using an antimicrobial mouthwash daily to help minimize bacteria that causes decay, plaque, and bad breath.  Daily flossing is also crucial to clean the sides of the teeth, next to the gums, and help prevent cavities and gum disease.  If you are unable to floss, there are other inter-dental cleaners available at the pharmacy or grocery store.  If you have questions or need more specific advice about “tips and tricks” for keeping your mouth healthy, please text or call our office at 734-426-9000.  One of our amazing staff or doctors will be happy to answer any questions you have!

Clean Your Toothbrush

The coronavirus can stay alive on some surfaces for up to three days. Disinfecting your toothbrush daily can help to ensure you kill viruses and bacteria that may be on the bristles or handle. Soaking it in mouthwash combined with a bit of hydrogen peroxide or just 50/50 hydrogen peroxide/water for a few minutes and then rinsing it under hot water can help keep your toothbrush squeaky clean. If you have an electric toothbrush, removing the head and soaking it in the solution should do the trick.  Make sure to clean the handle with an antimicrobial cleaner as well. If you have a toothbrush holder that sits on the counter, clean that too, or better yet, store your toothbrush in a cabinet or drawer – away from other bathroom aerosols.  And of course, never share toothbrushes with others.  If you think your toothbrush may be contaminated, throw it out and get a new one!

Replace Your Toothbrush Regularly

Although the standard recommendation is to replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months, you may want to do it more frequently during the pandemic. If bristles become frayed or discolored, you should dispose of it and get a new one. This goes for your electric toothbrush heads, too.

Stay Hydrated, Eat A Well-Balanced Diet, And Get Plenty Of Sleep

Another way you can contribute to good dental hygiene at home is by drinking lots of water and limiting foods that are high in sugar and starches. Eating plenty of lean protein, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables can help your immune system stay strong and keep your mouth in good shape. It’s also a good idea to limit very acidic foods and drinks, such as soda, coffee, tea, alcohol, energy drinks, sports drinks, and citrus juices and fruits.  In addition, be sure you and your family exercise in some form and continue getting plenty of quality sleep!  Your body “heals” and “replenishes” it’s vital systems while we sleep.

If You Have A Dental Problem, Call A Dentist

If you have a toothache, chipped or damaged tooth, or other dental questions, contact our office right away. Ignoring pain or other issues can lead to more serious, costly problems down the road. It can also negatively impact your overall health. We’re here to assist you with whatever you may need to stay healthy.

Contact Us To Learn More

If you have questions about dental hygiene at home during the coronavirus pandemic, our friendly, professional staff at Dexter Family Dentistry is here to help. We believe that patient education is the key to optimal oral health. We’re happy to answer any questions or concerns you may have about your dental health and overall wellness. For more information or to schedule an appointment, text or call us at 734-426-9000 or contact us online.  We wish you good health and look forward to seeing you again!