February is full of dental observances, including Children’s Dental Health Month and Gum Disease Awareness Month. There is also something else happening right now: pandemic-related dental problems. It’s been one year since COVID-19 began, and many people have avoided the dentist in an effort to stay safe. The fallout from this avoidance is proving to be painful and costly to many patients.
You can avoid post-pandemic dental problems by following these guidelines:
1. Keep Your Dental Appointments
Many adults are skipping their dental check-ups to reduce their risk of contracting coronavirus. But here’s the reality: Your dentist’s office is taking incredible precautions to keep you safe. In fact, your dentist’s office has always taken every possible step to keep you free from harm. Now, safeguards are even greater with social distancing protocols and infectious disease control.
2. See Your Dentist When You Have a Problem
If you have a toothache, are grinding your teeth excessively, or suffer from any other sort of dental problem, don’t wait until the pandemic is under control to contact your dentist for help. There is no way to know when life will get back to normal, but it is a guarantee that if you have an oral health problem now, it will only get worse without intervention. Save yourself from serious pain and a dental emergency by getting dental care now.
3. Minimize the Indulgences
We are all looking for ways to cope with how the pandemic is making us think and feel. For many people, that involves indulging in more sweets, snacking often, or sipping on coffee or soda constantly – whatever gets you through the day. This reaction is normal and understandable, but it’s putting your oral health at risk. If you can’t cut back on the comfort foods, at least brush and floss after you indulge to save your teeth from an excess of bacteria and food particles.
4. Brush and Floss Well
Working at home in your sweatpants day in and day out has made us all a little lazier. When you have no reason to get dressed and get ready like you normally do for a day at the office or out in the field or in the classroom, why bother at all, right? Wrong. At the very least, brush your teeth well twice a day and floss once a day. This at-home dental care is a critical part of your oral health and slacking on it can lead to decay, gum disease, and all sorts of painful oral health problems.
5. Monitor Your Kids
Parents are doubly stressed now with kids at home doing virtual schooling – and having full access to pantry and cupboard snacks all day long. If you’re less diligent about your own oral health, there’s a chance you’re less diligent about monitoring your kids’ teeth too. Build dental care into your kids’ morning and night routines and honor their dental appointments too. Kids are more susceptible to dental problems because they have thinner tooth enamel, which means cavities can strike them much faster than adults.
Rely on Dr. Alana Macalik, Arlington dentist, for all your dental care, pandemic or no pandemic. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.