Summer is here! It’s a great time to pack your bags for a vacation. While you look for the best attractions and book your hotel reservations, don’t forget about your smile. A few days away from home can leave a lasting mark on your dental health if you’re not careful. Here are 5 tips to safeguard your pearly whites while you’re traveling.
1. Schedule a Cleaning and Checkup
Did you know 1 in 6 Americans experiences a dental emergency annually? Many are caused by untreated oral health issues, like decay. You can ensure a dental emergency doesn’t ruin your travel plans by scheduling a cleaning and checkup before you leave. Your dental hygienist will clean and polish your teeth, so your smile will look its best. Your dentist will examine your mouth to look for anything concerning. You’ll have peace of mind because you’ll know your teeth and gums are healthy and far less likely to sustain a dental injury.
2. Pack an Oral Hygiene Kit
It’s easy to deviate from your daily oral hygiene routine when you’re not at home. However, even a few days of not brushing or flossing can affect your smile. Create an oral hygiene kit with travel-sized products to make it easy to brush and floss while you’re on the go.
3. Moderate Your Sugar Consumption
You’ll be surrounded by many tempting sweet treats and drinks while on vacation, but limit how often you have sugary foods and beverages to prevent decay. If you can’t resist your sweet tooth, rinse your mouth with water or chew a piece of sugarless gum if you can’t get to your toothbrush right away.
4. Stay Hydrated
Whether you’re hanging out by the hotel pool or taking a hike, drink plenty of water. Dehydration can cause your mouth to become dry, which creates a perfect environment for bacteria growth that can harm your oral health. Healthcare professionals recommend drinking at least eight 8oz glasses of water daily. Avoid alcohol because it can cause a dry mouth and dehydration.
5. Protect Your Teeth
Accidents can happen with no warning. A friendly game of football or a day of mountain biking can lead to an oral injury. Wear an athletic mouthguard if you’ll be participating in any sports. If you are heading to the pool, don’t run on wet surfaces to avoid slipping. Be careful when diving or around the edge of the pool to avoid bumping your mouth.
You rely on a healthy smile to look and feel your best. You won’t think twice before smiling for vacation photos by giving your teeth and gums the attention they deserve.
About Dr. Angela Courtney
Dr. Courtney earned her dental degree from The Ohio State University College of Dentistry and completed advanced education at the Las Vegas Institute. She strives to help each patient achieve their best smile using the latest innovations in dentistry. She is a proud member of the American Dental Association and many other professional organizations. Request an appointment through her website or call (614) 825-3873.