Do you Have to Brush Teeth when You’re Sick?

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When a terrible virus strikes, you may not have much of an appetite, and energy loss is almost certain. With sicknesses such as the flu, you are probably going to have a hard time even getting out of bed for a few days. It can be tempting to say to yourself, “why bother brushing my teeth? There’s nothing on them since I haven’t eaten, and I won’t be kissing anyone any time soon.” These are interesting arguments, but you should still make an effort to keep up with your oral hygiene when germs are having their way with your body.

Relieving a Sore Throat

There are home and drugstore remedies which certainly take the edge off of sore throat pain. Various home and drugstore options will help take the edge off of a seriously sore throat. Gargling with a teaspoon of salt mixed with eight ounces of warm water is quite soothing. Throat sprays and liquid medications can quell the sharp, biting discomfort you feel each time you swallow. Gargling with an antibacterial mouthrinse can kill extraneous germs trying to multiply inside your mouth. Or even simple over-the-counter pain medication (provided such pills are approved by your general physician) can really relieve a sore throat, provided swallowing the pill isn’t too excruciating.

Replacement and Storage of Toothbrushes

Regardless of the state of your overall health, you should not give up on brushing when sick, as we have mentioned. That said, make sure you always replace toothbrushes (or electric toothbrush heads) every six weeks. If you do become sick with a sore throat, it’s never a bad idea to replace your toothbrush as soon as you feel well again. Toothbrush bristles are a breeding ground for bacteria. Don’t forget to keep your oral hygiene instruments at least 10 feet from your commode in the bathroom, as germs can fly that far when the toilet is flushed.

About Dr. Stewart

James R. Stewart, Jr, DDS, PC and our compassionate staff proudly serve patients of all ages from Livonia, Farmington Hills, Plymouth, Northville, Dearborn Heights, Garden City, and all surrounding communities. To schedule an appointment, call our office today at (734) 425-4400.