With an estimated 488 million business trips taken each year, averaging four nights away each, it’s safe to say that we are a country on the move. But while all that travel can bulk up your air miles account, it could be doing some severe damage to your oral health. Whether you travel for work, or you’re lucky enough to travel for pleasure, there are some things you can (and should!) do to make sure you are taking proper care of your teeth while you’re on the road.
Pack Your Brush
Obviously, you should pack your toothbrush, floss and toothpaste wherever you go. But if you forget, most hotels have a supply of free toiletries for guests who left theirs at home. If you arrive at your destination with a lighter-than-intended suitcase, check with the front desk and see if they have any freebies you can use, or see if the hotel gift shop has anything available for purchase.
If you are taking a red-eye or overnight flight, you may want to consider packing a small travel brush, floss and tube of travel-sized paste in your carry-on bag so you can brush your teeth before going to sleep and when you wake up.
Chew (Sugarless!) Gum
Chewing sugarless gum for at least 20 minutes between meals is a great way to keep plaque at bay and make your breath smell great, too. This can be especially helpful on long days when you can’t get to a brush and don’t have two minutes to spare even if you could. Just remember, chewing gum won’t replace brushing your teeth, so brush them as soon as you can.
Address Dental Problems Before You Fly
Got a toothache? Don’t wait until you get back from your trip to check it out, especially if you’re flying. Many people experience increased pain and sensitivity in their teeth when they fly with dental problems. The last thing you want is to be stuck on an all-day (or all-night!) flight with an agonizing toothache.
Don’t Skip Dental Appointments
We know that life gets busy and trips come up unexpectedly, so if you’ve already scheduled your next appointment but find yourself needing to travel during that time, don’t just cancel your appointment, reschedule it! As soon as you find out you’ll need to travel, give Dr. Abelar’s office a call at 858-866-9692, and we can and let us find a time that works better with your schedule. Remember, the longer you wait, the worse any problems that could be hiding in your mouth will get, and the longer you’ll have to go without that fresh-from-the-dentist-clean smile.