PICTURE THIS: YOU AND YOUR FAMILY HAVE TRAVELED to a gorgeous beach location for a week of fun in the sun. Youre about to do some serious sunbathing, swimming, and snorkeling when a family member starts complaining about a bad toothache! Or, a pokey wire is making someones cheek bleed. Argh! Few things can kill your vacation spirit faster than a dental problem or dental emergency. So here are a few tips for taking your teeth on vacation!
Before You Go
If youve been keeping your regularly scheduled appointments, this is probably not an issue. But if not, call us to make an appointment. As you know, most problems with your teeth or mouth happen gradually. If we can catch a developing issue before you leave on your vacation, you probably wont need any of the other tips below.
Second, consider making yourself a dental emergency kit to pack along on your vacation that includes the following:
- Mouthguard(s) – A mouthguard prevents chipped or knocked out teeth. If your plans include any type of high adventure activities (or things as simple as skateboarding or other sports), consider taking a mouthguard.
- Floss – You were planning to bring floss along anyway for your nightly dental routine, right? We knew it.
- Pain Relievers – Both topical and ingested (but dont use aspirin as topical pain relief as it can damage your gums).
- Orthodontic Wax – If anyone in your group has braces, you probably already know how important this is.
- Clove Oil, Pencil w/ Eraser, and Sugarless Gum – See explanation below.
- Contact Information – Even if we arent close by, you may need to contact us via phone or email.
Some On-The-Spot Tips
- Toothache – Rinse your mouth with warm water and apply an icepack to your cheek if its swelling. It may be helpful to apply some topical pain reliever or dab clove oil on and around the tooth. If the pain persists, get a hold of us.
- Chipped, Broken, Or Knocked Out Teeth – Save the pieces/tooth in milk or salt water and get to emergency care quickly. After an hour, odds decrease that the tooth will go back in where it belongs. If theres bleeding, put some gauze over the wound.
- Lost Filling – Heres a cool tipput sugarless (sugarless only!) gum in the spot the filling used to cover. This will keep the pain down and stop other things from getting stuck in the gap.
- Something Caught In Your Teeth or Braces – Rinse with warm water and gently floss. If its not coming out, DONT try poking around with something sharp. Give us a call or seek out local care before it causes grief.
- Pokey Braces Wires – You can try to move a protruding wire with a pencil eraser. If that doesnt work and its still poking you, cover it up with wax. Not enough wax? You can use sugarless gum or foam earplugs. We dont want you trying to clip any wires yourself.
Many Of The Same Tips (and more) In A Short Video
When In Doubt, Contact Us
Thats why youll want to include our contact information in your emergency kit. Well give you advice, or refer you to someone in the area if you need immediate care. Were here to help you and your family in any way we can. Keep in mind that if you are somewhere with internet access, you can always direct message us on our Facebook page!
Have a fantastic vacation, and thank you for being our valued patient!
Any other tips YOU know about? Share them below!