According to the Houston Airport System, over 43 million passengers went through the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in 2015. Whether you’re flying across Texas, the country, or the world, flights can be long. Even at 35,000 feet in the air, you don’t have to neglect your dental health.
Here are 5 items you should keep in your carry-on bag when flying in an airplane to maintain good dental care.
Toothbrush & Toothpaste
There are many different kinds of travel-size toothbrushes and toothpastes.
Remember to bring liquids and pastes in containers 3.4 ounces (100 mL) or smaller, and store them all in a clear bag. This will be necessary to get the items through the airport security check without having them confiscated.
If you have a meal or snack with acidic food, wait to brush your teeth for at least 30 minutes. Acidic foods weaken your enamel (the outer layer of your teeth) and brushing your teeth immediately can actually damage your enamel.
Your best option, after eating acidic foods, is to chew on sugar-free gum. Make sure you have water during and after your meal, to continually rinse away food particles and bacteria.
Sugar-Free Chewing Gum
Chewing sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after a meal helps reduce your risk of tooth decay. The action of chewing promotes saliva production; saliva is your body’s natural way to rinse food particles and bacteria from your teeth.
Here are the sugar-free gum options with the ADA Seal of Acceptance. This ensures that these products are safe and effective in what their packaging claims.
- 5 Sugarfree Gum
- Dentyne Ice Sugarless Gum
- Eclipse Sugarfree Gum
- Extra Sugarfree Gum
- Ice Breakers Ice Cubes Sugar Free Chewing Gum
- Orbit for Kids Sugarfree Gum
- Orbit Sugarfree Gum
- Stride Sugarless Gum
- Trident Sugarfree Gum
If you don’t like chewing gum or if it hurts your jaw, opt for sugar-free mints.
Sucking on a mint helps promote saliva production. As with chewing gum, this helps rinse your mouth of food particles and bacteria.
If you have any removable dental appliances, like dental retainers, make sure to keep them with you in your carry-on bag.
Many retainers are worn during the night, so if you have a long flight, you don’t have to skip wearing them.
If you wear Invisalign trays, make sure to pack their storage case in your carry-on bag. You have to remove the trays when you eat and when you brush your teeth, so you’ll need a safe and sanitary place to store them.
Water helps wash away food particles and bacteria from your mouth. Buy a bottle of water at the airport or on the plane to have with your meal and snacks during your flight.
Because of the limits on the size of liquids you can bring through security, you will have to purchase a water bottle after going through airport security, or wait for the drink cart on the plane.
By packing these 5 items in your carry-on, you can still maintain a good dental health routine at 35,000 feet in the air.
For more information or to schedule a dental appointment, contact Greenspoint Dental in Houston, Texas. We are dedicated to providing you and your loved ones with the best dental care.