Dental Hygiene Travel Tips for Your Next Adventure

From logistics to flight prices, travel can be hectic. So you ignore the dental hygiene while you travel sometimes. Learn better oral care practices here.
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With the invention of the airplane and the improvements in commercial flights, more people than ever travel to different parts of the world. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, almost 2.9 million people fly in and out of airports in the United States daily. Some people travel a lot for fun. However, others are always on the go because of their profession.

While more and more people are more mindful about maintaining a healthy lifestyle, things get more complicated once you start traveling. For some, it’s time to put #cheatday into effect. Sure, this mindset is usually meant for food, but it can also come into play with some of our routine activities. There are many instances when connecting flights can stop you from taking care of some of the things you usually do at home.

For instance, if you’ve been traveling for 24 hours, you might have to pass on showering during that time. That’s not because you don’t want to. Sometimes, there are just no facilities at the airport that can let you do that. And if you think those cleansing wipes work? They can only help mask things, not thoroughly clean you. So, if showering is something one can pass on, oral health can fall by the wayside, too. Although some of you reading this might wonder how anyone could miss brushing their teeth on the go, it can happen. But don’t worry; we are here to help you out.

In this article, we will be looking at what you can do to maintain good dental hygiene while you travel:

Bring the Right Tools

dental hygiene while you travel bathroom

Let’s start with the basics. Before you can get to cleaning your teeth, you will need to get the right tools. While that means a toothbrush and some toothpaste, some people have a more robust oral care process. Sometimes, a basic toothbrush doesn’t cut it for them, and they opt for an electric toothbrush. If you love a good electric toothbrush, you know how it can sometimes be hard to bring the one you have at home on your travels.

For anyone who’s in that boat, don’t worry. There are lots of options for travel-friendly electric toothbrushes on the market. Quip has been one of the more recent popular brands, but there are also more well-known brands like Oral-B with a range of brushes. The Oral-B Pro 1000 is one of the brand’s higher-end models, running about $40. However, they also have the Oral-B Pro-Health Anti-Microbial brush that runs on a battery, but you must replace it instead of charging it. Remember to bring your travel adapter for rechargeable ones – you’ll realize the importance of this the one time you forget and your electric toothbrush is no longer electric!

But it’s not limited to just toothbrushes. The following section will examine other oral care products you can take on your trip. We will also show you how to keep your teeth healthy while traveling with these products.

Travel-Size Products

dental hygiene while you travel packing

Now that we’ve looked at toothbrushes let’s talk about other things that keep up your dental hygiene while you travel. Although there are disposable toothbrushes like the Colgate Wisp Optic White Cool Mint mini brushes, these are for quick fixes and are better at keeping your breath fresh in a pinch. However, there are better substitutes for the actual act of brushing and flossing your teeth.

So it would be best to keep a travel-size tube of toothpaste and some floss in your toiletries bag. Since everyone tends to be partial to their brands, we won’t get into the nitty-gritty of it here. However, it’s good to note that many of your favorite types of toothpaste within a brand will likely have a travel-friendly version. You can check Amazon for travel toothpaste if you can’t find it at the store. And the product will be there as long as it’s still in production. You don’t have to go with a travel-size container when it comes to floss. However, if you feel that the normal-sized container is too big for your packing situation, there are numerous options to get a miniature version of your favorite brand. You can also grab a bag of floss picks, like a toothpick, and floss in one. And when you’re done using one of them, you can toss it into the trash.

If you have time in the restroom before flights and don’t mind gargling in public, toss a mini version of mouthwash. Like toothpaste, various types of mouthwash on the market cater to different oral care needs.

Taking Care of Your Tools

dental hygiene while you travel toothrbush

Aside from acquiring the right tools to keep up with dental hygiene while traveling, it’s also good to know how to keep them in shape. Using toothbrushes once and then tossing them can get expensive, especially if it’s something like an electric toothbrush. If you take a manual toothbrush with you on the road, it’s a good practice to replace it every two to three months, depending on how much you use it. If you’re constantly traveling, you should make it a habit to replace it during that time. However, it could last a little longer if you don’t.

The same goes for the electric toothbrush. The brush heads on electric models have the same shelf life as the manual toothbrushes, and now you can purchase brush heads in bulk. That way, you can skip going to the store or ordering them online. You can also buy cases for the brush portion of your toothbrush. They can be as simple as a plastic cover or as fancy as something that has a built-in sanitizing feature.

In addition to protecting the brush head, electric toothbrushes also need a good wipe-down after use. To prevent any toothpaste grit and film from getting into the device’s mechanics, you should wipe it down with a wet cloth. Then, after all the dirt is off, you should wipe it with a dry one so no moisture is left on the electric toothbrush.

Alternatives to Brushing

dental hygiene while you travel bird brushing

Sometimes, you can’t get a brushing session in between flights. Or maybe you prefer to avoid taking care of your teeth in public. If you fall into one of these categories, then you can try a few other things to keep your mouth feeling fresh. We mentioned that having a mini bottle of mouthwash is a good and quick solution to avoid bad breath. Depending on the brand you pick up, some can eliminate a solid amount of germs and bacteria in your mouth.

You can also chew gum. Assuming you’re a silent chewer, there are types of gum that aren’t going to ruin your teeth.

And it’s been known that chewing gum can help you avoid getting airplane ear. Airplane ear is stress exerted on your eardrum and other middle ear tissues when the air pressure in your middle ear and the air pressure in the environment are out of balance. It feels like your ear is clogged.

Seeing the Dentist While Traveling

dental hygiene while you travel dentist chair

If you’re traveling for long periods, it would be good to invest in travel insurance. Since many countries don’t offer healthcare for free to non-citizens, this is an excellent way to prepare for any emergency. That way, you won’t be shelling out much money to make yourself feel better.

If you’re already traveling and have a dental emergency, like a toothache or something much worse, you can ask your hotel concierge for help. Sometimes, your country’s consulate has a list of services to contact. You can also contact the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers. This is an excellent resource for finding a health or dental professional to help you.

Brushing your teeth may have been something people have been doing since they were kids. But sometimes life gets in the way, and you can’t get it done. And that can happen while you are traveling. If that’s the case, the tips above are a great way to plan your dental hygiene while traveling. Or it could get you to design a better oral care plan to ensure your teeth’ health. No matter what course of action you choose, knowing how to keep your teeth healthy while traveling should never be something you push under the rug.