8 Ways to Keep Your Dental Hygiene
Perfect When Travelling
By Alice Bell
Travelling lets life present you with numerous opportunities. It fills us with a sense of wonder- and wanderlust and keeps us longing for more destinations to visit, people to meet, cultures to savour and foods to taste. It is a chance to take time out from your daily duties, job responsibilities, hectic timetable, everyday pressures and to experience more joy in life.
However, traveling long distances for a continued period means your routine hygiene becomes rather tricky. The things you usually take for granted – like cleaning your teeth – stop being carried out in the way you have become accustomed to. So if you are heading out on a journey and have clean teeth on your mind make sure you pay attention to these tips and tricks to keep your teeth and gums healthy on the go:
- Rinsing and Mouthwashing. A useful thing to do to keep teeth clean between meals is to swish your mouth with water after each time you eat. It can help you get rid of excess of food and reduce plaque and acidity to boot. When traveling in places where there is no running water available or you can’t drink the tap water it is important to use the water you would drink. So bottled or treated water for rinsing is the only option in destinations with unsafe water. Still better is mouthwash, and preferably the most powerful one, specifically designed for travel purposes. In this case you will use a small amount of it each time, so it will last longer and will be easier to carry. And, to fully protect your teeth, make sure it contains fluoride. A modern development of mouthwashing technique is a rechargeable water flosser. You pour a small amount of water or mouthwash into the reservoir and get as close to professional polish as you can. Being a great opportunity for refreshing your entire mouth on the go, it is still no substitute for brushing, though.
- Keep Your Toothbrush Dry. From time to time let it out of your bag in order to dry properly and keep it in a large enough container with holes. Otherwise your toothbrush will stay moist and become a breeding ground for bacteria.
- Go Small. Opt for mini toothpastes and foldable toothbrushes designed for travel purposes since the more compact your hygiene kit is, the more likely it is to stay handy. Just don’t forget to stock up a solid collection of them as they are not going to last you long (especially when sharing) and your trip will take more than a couple of days.
- Chew Gum. As any specialist will tell you, little can be better for your teeth between meals than chewing a sugar-free gum. The chewing motion helps to activate saliva production in the mouth thus rinsing it and fighting plaque and bad breath. So there’s no such thing as bringing too much gum on a trip.
- Cut Out Excess Sugar. Exposing your teeth to sugar you invite tooth decay, so try to keep sugary snacks and treats to a minimum. And the longer your teeth are waiting for a brush after sodas and candies the more elevated the risk becomes. Besides, junk food gets easily stuck in your teeth increasing the level of plaque and tartar build-up in your mouth. By contrast, apples and carrots do an impressive job cleaning your teeth as you eat them. Besides, healthy snacks like vegetables, nuts, and cheese are much better for the enamel.
- Brush Your Teeth Without Toothpaste. Having accidentally left your toothpaste behind or running out of one may put a damper on an otherwise relaxing getaway. Fortunately, there are alternatives to standard commercial toothpaste. You can dip your brush in mouthwash and apply it on your teeth, use a mixture of baking soda (which is abrasive and effectively removes plaque and food particles) and a few drops of water or even skip toothpaste and ply your wet brush.
- Pack an Extra. If your trip is likely to take you to places where shops are hard to come by it is wise to take along at least one spare toothbrush.
- End the Day With a Thorough Cleaning. When you finally reach your destination (whether it is a hotel room or your grandma’s house) take an extra time to focus on your teeth with an out-and-out final cleaning of the day ending it on a minty fresh, healthy note.
Your trip may last a few days or weeks, but your teeth must serve you longer than that and never take a holiday. So be kind to them and don’t let your usual oral hygiene standards fail on the road trip. After all, becoming a real toothsaver will take you just a little bit of effort.
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