3 Ways to Maintain Oral Health at Home During COVID-19

A photo of an girl smiling with her toothbrush and showing

As our routines, expectations, and daily activities evolve with the COVID-19 crisis and as we follow our mandate to shelter in place, we tend to feel helpless at times. What are some of the things that we can still control? Our team at Flushing Oral Surgery – Dental Implants wants to encourage you to prioritize the upkeep of your oral health. This is one thing you can do in the midst of these uncertain times. As we adjust to this current situation, oral health is one thing that can so easily fall by the wayside if we are not careful.

Here’s a reminder of what we all should be doing to maintain optimal oral health, with or without the crisis of COVID-19:

  • Wash your hands.Never before have we been encouraged so emphatically to wash our hands, but 20 seconds before and after any personal dental care should always be your standard.
  • Brush twice daily.Don’t neglect this practice just because your daily routine is not the same as it once was. Make a conscious effort to prioritize your brushing.
  • Floss once daily.If this hasn’t yet become your habit, make it one now. Floss while you read before bed or during your evening show.
  • Eat well.Sticky, sugary snacks and drinks may be attractive at the moment, but they’ll destroy your teeth if you’re not careful.
  • Limit snacking.Permit yourself to eat at specified times, and steer clear of your kitchen even though it may just be a few feet from your home office.
  • Drink plenty of water.Drinking half your body weight in ounces is ideal for your overall health, and water serves as a natural cleanser for your teeth.
  • Avoid smoking.Did you know smoking is bad for your oral health? It limits blood flow to your mouth, making it easier for bacteria to grow.

Maintaining Your Oral Health

Consider the following practices and perspectives as you seek to prevent a decline in your oral health while we all stay at home.

The Long Haul

COVID-19 will not last forever. It might be hard to imagine at the moment, but remind yourself that social distancing will eventually be a thing of the past. When you’re face to face with your people again, your breath and the state of your teeth will matter. What you do now, or fail to do, will have an impact on your future. Brush now for a brighter tomorrow. When the coronavirus is in the rearview mirror, you’ll be glad you did.

Your New Daily Routine

We no longer need to get fully dressed as we work from home. There’s no rush to eat breakfast before walking out the door. Our days have become fluid, so forgetting to brush our teeth until 3 pm happens to the best of us. Is it even worth it by then? Yes, it is. But brushing in the morning is even better. So, make a plan to brush right after that first cup of coffee or first thing as you return from your morning walk. Schedule it into your new morning routine. Set a reminder on your phone if you need to.

Eating/Drinking Habits

Did you realize that comfort foods, snacks, and alcoholic beverages are on the rise as we cope during these prolonged periods of constant family togetherness and isolation? We are reaching for anything that will comfort us as we navigate our new normal that is anything but normal. However, sugary and acidic food and drink can destroy enamel and wreak havoc on teeth. So, limit your intake. And drink lots of water to prevent erosion and to wash away potential cavity-causing bacteria is a helpful hack when you do partake.

Excellent oral health doesn’t just happen, especially as we work from home, manage distance learning, and juggle the uncertainties of this current time. But routine is essential. If you’re struggling emotionally or fighting psychological fatigue, take some time out of your day to access your routine and the habits that you’ve developed over that past several weeks. Decide on one adjustment you’d like to make that will lead you toward a happier, healthier smile. Make oral hygiene be your focus today.

Dr. Li and our team at Flushing Oral Surgery – Dental Implants have missed seeing you, and we plan to reschedule your appointments at the soonest possible opportunity.