Tuckahoe, NY – This summer, we hope you have exciting vacation plans scheduled. Whether going on a quick weekend getaway or a weeks long journey, we hope you adventure and have fun, but don’t forget about caring for your braces!
“Orthodontic treatment doesn’t have to get in the way of travel plans, as long as you think ahead and plan accordingly,” says Dr. Sam Polan of Tuckahoe Family Orthodontics. “We’ve put together some tips to help you vacation well while in braces.”
- Don’t slack on your oral hygiene routine. We know you want to explore, sample new foods, and feel carefree while on vacation. But following a tried and true oral hygiene routine will ensure your treatment stays on track. Brush and floss after waking up and before going to bed, and after every meal.
- Pack a braces care kit. When traveling, we always like to be prepared. If you are out exploring, taking a braces care kit with you in case you hit any snags while out, and to keep your braces clean and fresh. Pack a travel toothbrush and flossers so you can brush after meals. Pack a small mirror, too, so you can give your smile a once over to be sure you’ve gotten any debris off your brackets and wires. Also, remember to pack orthodontic wax if you have metal braces so you can fix any areas that might irritate your mouth. If you wear Invisalign or have a retainer, be sure you carry the case with you so you have someplace to put your retainer or aligner while eating.
- Remember your braces diet. If you are traveling somewhere new, it can be tempting to sample all the local delicacies. But if you have metal braces don’t forget the foods that are on your do not eat list. Avoid foods that are too sticky, hard, crunchy or chewy. If you break a bracket or bend a wire on food you shouldn’t be eating during your vacation, you’ll need to schedule an appointment with your orthodontist as soon as you get home. Damaged appliances can set your treatment time back.
- Drink plenty of water. Not only is it important to stay hydrated, drinking water can help wash away food debris left over after eating or snacking. If you can’t brush after, drink plenty of water to flush away any food that might linger.
- Don’t forget to wear your aligners. If you use Invisalign for your orthodontic treatment, remember you must wear your aligners at least 22 hours a day, even when traveling. If you slack on your aligner wear, you may set your treatment time back.
- Schedule a visit with your orthodontist. If you are going away for an extended period, schedule an appointment with your orthodontist for before you leave. That way, we can check to make sure everything is on track, and we can make any necessary adjustments to your treatment schedule to be sure everything continues smoothly.
“Traveling with braces can be a breeze, as long as you plan correctly,” says Dr. Polan. “If you have any questions or need any travel tips, my office is always happy to help our patients. Call our office at 914-654-1859.”