Don’t Forget Your Smile While On Vacation!

Posted on May 02, 2016 by William J. Claiborne, DDS MS

It’s May, and many people are planning summer vacation time with friends and family. While some getaways will take people out of the country, others will keep them here in the States to enjoy the mountains, parks, and shore. This time is a great way to rejuvenate!ScubaCouple

While your vacation plans may include ways to avoid weight gain and jet lag, you’ll also want to avoid the potential for a cavity or gum problems. And, vacations are easy times to be vulnerable smile-wise. We are often ‘off schedule’ during vacations and out of a normal routine. This means that brushing and flossing may not get the attention they deserve.

If changing time zones, add in an extra brushing-&-flossing session rather than miss one or have it delayed by several hours. You can easily pack a travel toothbrush in your purse or carry-on bag with a travel-sized toothpaste. When you cannot brush, swish several times with water.

Regardless of your destination, be sure to pack with your smile in mind. Take fluoridated toothpaste, toothbrush and floss. When you arrive, place these items out by the bathroom sink where they’ll be visible reminders and handy to use.

Drink plenty of water to ensure oral moisture and be aware of your consumption of drying foods and beverages. Alcoholic beverages, caffeine, spicy foods and sweets may be ways you add to a vacation’s indulgences. Just be aware of what they may be doing to your oral wellness.

It’s easy to grab snacks when on vacation. Remember, each time you eat or drink, you trigger an acid attack in your mouth. This acid is so hard on tooth enamel, it actually softens it for 20-30 minutes. After eating, swish with water or chew sugarless gum to activate saliva flow.

Try to limit snacking. If you do snack, opt for fresh fruits and veggies rather than chips or other carbohydrate-laden foods (which bacteria love). Drink bottled water rather than soda or sugary drinks.

When you return, you will have avoided adding to the credit cards bills coming in by tending to your smile’s health every day of your vacation. (Something to smile about!) By making your smile a priority during your ‘off’ time, you prevent can problems that require time and money to repair. And, the money you save can be applied to your next vacation!

The best way to GO on vacation is to ensure your oral health is in good shape BEFORE you leave! If you are behind on your 6-month dental checkups, call 828-274-9440 to request an exam. We’ll get your oral health vacation-ready!


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