You start the day by arriving at the airport just after five am, and grab a large coffee and sugary muffin to perk you up while you wait for your early flight. On the airplane, you accept the offer of a free Coke, though you usually don’t indulge in soda. Once you arrive at your destination, you might find a fresh citrus salad in the buffet by the beach, filled with local oranges and grapefruits. You brush your teeth before bed, thinking that you are on top of your oral hygiene, but are you? Travel includes many scenarios that can harm your dental health, if you are not careful. These four tips will help you keep your smile healthy while you are on the road.
1. Keep Floss Within Eyesight
Immediately when you reach your travel destination, unpack your floss and place it out on the bathroom counter-top, in plain view. Since travel disrupts our usual routines, the habits that you have formed at home may fall by the wayside. If you usually wake up at the same time each morning, and brush and floss before hitting the gym, you might feel like you’ve got it down and don’t need to worry. But while traveling, you might be sleeping in or waking up to new environmental stimuli, which throws of the internal cues you rely on at home. If you can see your floss, you are more likely to remember this part of your routine, and reach for it every day.
2. Say No To Acidic Foods
Don’t use travel as an excuse to indulge in acidic foods like coffee, tomato sauce, and citrus fruits. You need to be just as vigilant about the health of your teeth while you are traveling, as you are at home. Your teeth don’t care that you happen to be on vacation, or in a new country! They still feel and react to the damage that you do. If you do eat acidic foods, protect your tooth enamel by eating neutralizing foods afterwards, such as nuts or cheeses. Karl Jobst Grove OK dentist informs us that this will cut down on the acidity that you have introduced into your mouth.
3. Stock Up On Water Bottles
In international environments where the drinking water is compromised, keep a water bottle with your toothpaste and toothbrush. This will make it convenient to splash your toothbrush with water and rinse your mouth. With a water bottle on hand, you’ll have no excuses for missing your twice-a-day minimum brushing routine. Keep bottled water on hand through out the day, as well, so that you reach for water instead of soda, coffee, or alcohol.
4. Replace Sweets With Healthy Snacks
Travel can be tiring, and sometimes this tempts people to reach for sugary treats. If you travel often for work, you might be familiar with this scenario. You’ve been up and traveling since three am, and now you’re feeling jet lagged just in time to jump into a meeting in which you have to make a presentation. Don’t reach for a candy bar for that energy surge that you know you need. Instead, have a snack that gives you sustainable fuel and consists of a combination of fats, protein, and light carbs. Sliced turkey, string cheese, and veggie sticks would be a great option. Excess sugar can lead to cavities and other dental health issues.
These four tips will keep your dental health in top form while you travel. Seeing new places can be exciting and eye opening. It also disrupts our daily routines and habits, which can be a good thing. Use travel to your advantage by forming new healthy habits while on the road: floss daily, avoid acidic foods, drink lots of water, and eat healthy foods.