Traveling can be a lot of fun, but it can also be tough on your oral hygiene routine. If you’re not careful, it’s easy to let your dental health fall by the wayside when you’re on the road. But it doesn’t have to be that way!
With a bit of planning, you can easily keep your mouth healthy and your smile bright in any season or where your travels take you. Here are seven of our favorite tips to help you out.
- Pack A Travel Toothbrush & Toothpaste
- Drink Plenty Of Water
- Avoid Sugary Drinks
- Eat Cavity-Fighting Foods
- Stay Away From Sticky Candies
- Watch Out for Acidic Foods
- Book an Appointment with Your Dentist Before You Leave
1. Don’t Forget To Pack That Toothbrush
This one is a no-brainer. Whenever you’re away from home, pack a travel-sized toothbrush and toothpaste, so you can continue to brush twice a day. Add a new dental floss container to your hygiene kit, and you’re almost set. You may also want to include a TSA-approved mini mouthwash container, so you can quickly freshen up your breath if needed.
2. Staying Hydrated Is Good For Your Teeth
Staying hydrated is essential for overall health, but it’s also crucial for oral health. When your body is adequately hydrated, your saliva production increases, which helps rinse away harmful bacteria and food particles from your teeth. So whether you’re traveling by plane, train, car, or some other means, drink plenty of water.
Pro-tip – request iced sparkling water or club soda for a refreshing summer treat, or a cup of herbal tea to warm you up in the winter.
3. Limit Sugary Drinks On The Road
We know we just told you that it’s important to stay hydrated. However, it’s best to limit sugary drinks like soda and fruit juice, even when you’re on a business trip or on a relaxing vacation. An occasional indulgence is acceptable, but try to limit yourself as much as possible. Too much sugar can lead to cavities, so you’re better off sticking with water, tea, or unsweetened beverages as much as possible.
4. Choose Healthy, Delicious Travel Snacks
Just as sugary drinks can cause cavities, certain foods can help fight them. Foods like cheese, nuts, and apples aren’t just delicious. They all contain high levels of calcium and phosphorus, which help strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities.
Hard cheeses don’t need to be refrigerated as long as it’s not too hot. So be sure to pack plenty of these or other low-sugar snacks when you hit the road.
5. Avoid Sticky Situations…Like Candy
We’re talking about sticky foods like candy bars and caramel popcorn here! These foods tend to stick around on your teeth longer than others, giving cavity-causing bacteria more time to do their damage. So even though you’re on vacation and more likely to indulge in extra goodies, try to limit yourself to just one or two per day (or avoid them altogether if you can).
You might try chewing some gum afterward if you don’t have easy access to your toothbrush, but you should only go for sugar-free gum bearing the ADA Seal.
6. Don’t Eat Too Many Acidic Foods
Another food category to watch out for is acidic food like citrus fruits and tomatoes. While a little acidity isn’t necessarily bad for your teeth, too much of it can start to break down tooth enamel over time. So if you do eat acidic foods while traveling, be sure to brush afterward (preferably with fluoride toothpaste) to help protect your smile.
7. Traveling Soon? See A Dentist First!
One of the best ways to ensure good mouth health while traveling is to book an appointment with your dentist *before* you go. This way, they can take a look at your teeth and make sure everything is in good shape before you head off on your trip.
There’s nothing much worse than waking up with a toothache, especially when you’re away from home. So don’t forget this important step!
Las Vegans Love Nevada Dentistry & Braces
If you’re gearing up for a summer vacation, winter ski adventure, or even an extended business trip, be sure to give Nevada Dentistry & Braces a call. We serve patients throughout the Las Vegas Valley. Let’s get you on the schedule for a pre-travel dental checkup. We want to help ensure your pearly whites are in good shape for all of your photo ops.