Most people can’t afford to travel without a plan. They write down an itinerary, have a checklist of essentials they think they need on the trip, and have their travel budget all sorted out. But know that even the most health-conscious travelers often end up forgetting about their oral health while traveling.
How Traveling Impacts Oral Health
Traveling disrupts your daily routine. You are no longer in your comfort zone and will likely be out exploring new places, meeting and eating with other people, tasting local cuisines, and indulging in new tasty drinks. While you enjoy your new environment along with the joys of traveling, it becomes easier to let go and let loose of your daily healthy habits.
You might be too excited to start your day and do not mind tasting new cuisines that can stain your teeth or stink your breath. You might even break a tooth or hurt your gums while trying out exotic delicacies or while engaging in fun activities. After hours of traveling and enjoying new experiences, you might be too tired to even floss or brush your teeth.
Did you know that dehydration can also take a toll on your oral health? Traveling, especially by plane, drinking from tiny water bottles, and hours of exploration can make you feel dehydrated. A dry mouth serves as a perfect breeding ground for bacteria.
Dental emergencies can also occur when you least expect them. You might get your teeth knocked out, or toothaches can happen, ruining your travel plans and ability to enjoy the trip. If cash-strapped, you might be torn between blowing your travel budget just to get your teeth checked and waiting for the trip to be over before seeing your dentist.
Caring for Your Oral Health When Traveling
No matter the occasion, the kind of trip you are pursuing, or where your destination is, oral health should never be at the back of your mind. The good news is that there are ways you can still prioritize oral health even if you plan on making the most out of your next trip. Here’s how.
Schedule Dental Checkups Strategically
If you have your next dental appointment coming up, it is best that you don’t skip this before the trip. This way, your dentist can go ahead with the necessary procedures before your much-awaited trip. This is especially important if your Invisalign braces need to be adjusted.
Doing so can also help boost your confidence. This is especially true if you are on a business trip. Meeting new people, talking to clients abroad, and showing off your skills is easier when you have a dashing smile to back you up.
Don’t forget to keep your dentist’s contact number. They may not be available to help you sort oral emergencies while you are in another state or is on a trip abroad. Still, they can help you in other ways, like recommending another reliable clinic to help you manage dental emergencies that can’t wait.
Mind What You Eat or Drink
Travel destinations are filled with scrumptious meals, exotic dishes, and unique beverages that you might find irresistible. But all these can contribute to bad oral health. To be on the safe side, mind what you eat and be careful about what you drink.
Don’t Skip Oral Hygiene
Understandably, you might feel exhausted or forget your favorite toothbrush, floss, or toothpaste. But no excuse is enough for you to skip your daily dental routine. As much as possible, pack your oral hygiene essentials. If you forget one or two items, check your next best alternatives.
Think about the consequences that skipping to floss or brush can do to you. You don’t want to end up having cavities, sport a stinky breath, or keep on talking to others while your teeth look anything but clean. This usually does the trick if you need the motivation to stay on your oral health routine.
When in Doubt, Skip Local Tap Water
There are times when you find yourself doubting if the water on the tap is safe to drink or even brush with. The best way to handle this situation is to use bottled water instead. This will give you better peace of mind knowing you are not brushing and gargling dirty water.
Remember the traveling can lead to dry mouth and dehydration. This can make your mouth a great breeding ground for bacteria. Keep yourself hydrated, especially with bottled water.
This list goes to show that traveling can lead to poor oral health. Thankfully, you can still indulge in better oral hygiene so that your oral health won’t suffer while traveling. You can always use this list as your guide if you need more ideas on prioritizing oral health while on a trip.