When cold and flu hit your home, it can be miserable. Fever, sniffles and other issues are common problems and the first thing you do is grab those over the counter medications and herbal remedies. You know it won’t do much for the actual illness, but if you’re lucky, it will relieve the symptoms.
These medicines are ideal of illnesses, but they can be a problem for your teeth. While we certainly don’t expect you to stop taking these, but you should be aware so you can reduce the impact. It’s likely not going to be immediate, but over time or on already damages teeth, medicines and herbal remedies can cause problems.
Decongestants and Sinus Medication
The picture of a person wrapped in blankets with a stuffed up or runny nose is typical for illnesses. The nose is usually red and irritated, so they take a nasal decongestant or sinus medication to help dry them out.
It’s the drying out that’s a problem. A typical side effect of decongestants and sinus medications is dry mouth. The reduction in saliva allows bacteria to grow, acidic foods and drink to sit on teeth unabated. This can wear away enamel and increase chance of infections.
Make sure to drink plenty of water when taking these medications to help wash away and dilute the offenders.
When you have a nagging cough, mentholated cough drops helps kick them to the curb. They’re designed to be sucked on for several minutes and the juice mixes with your saliva and coats your teeth. Menthol isn’t the problem. Many times the cough drops have sugar or corn syrup in it to help with flavor.
Sugar is bad for teeth. The fact that it gets to sit there in your mouth while you suck on the cough drop makes it even worse.
Hot Tea and Orange Juice
While not a medication, herbal teas are known for their healing properties. They can a sore throat and help with congestion. Teas can be acidic and can harm the enamel on teeth. Many people also sweeten them with sugar or honey, which can also have a negative impact on tooth health.
Orange juice is filled with disease fighting vitamin C, but it’s also filled with citric acid. Like tea, the acidity is bad for your teeth.
If you’re drinking these to feel better, consider using a straw so there is less chance the liquid comes into contact with teeth.
Feel better, But Be Prepared
Being sick is horrible and we medication and homemade cure alls can help you feel better. Just keep your teeth in mind, If you’re having tooth pain or need a checkup, then contact us and we’ll get your teeth back on track.