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Spring Break is a time for rest and relaxation, but unfortunately, plaque never takes a vacation. It is easy to forget your brushing and flossing routine when you are on a road trip with family or friends, but we here at Heroes Dental want to remind you to take those good habits on the road with you.

How? In short, do what our dentists in Edinburg do: practice good oral hygiene every day. That way it becomes a habit you can follow no matter where you are.

1. Leave the Sugary Drinks Behind and Take Some Water Instead

Vacations and indulgence go hand in hand. While it may be easy to grab a juice or soda at the gas station when you hit your first rest stop, opt for a bottle of water instead.

A sugary drink can promote the growth of bacteria that feasts on the leftover sugar on your teeth. It will then secrete acids on your teeth that weaken the integrity of your teeth’s enamel, making cavities all the more likely. Do your teeth a favor and drink plenty of water throughout your vacation.

Coke contains 10 teaspoons of #sugar! #ProtectYourTeeth #Heroes Dental Click To Tweet

2. Only Pack the Good Stuff

Sure, chips, cookies, and candy can spice up a boring ride but eating healthy snacks can give you a boost of energy and help to keep your teeth in tip-top shape. Instead of that Snickers, opt-in for fruits and vegetables including:

  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Pears
  • Celery

Not only can these items freshen your breath but they also act like natural little toothbrushes that wipe plaque off of your teeth, gums, and tongue.

3. Chew on Some Sugar-Free Gum

It’s no secret that chewing gum stimulates the flow of saliva in your mouth. That, in turn, washes away plaque and leftover bits of food that can accumulate on your teeth. Chewing sugar-free gum ensures that you are not contributing to the problem of bacterial growth, while helping to clean them as well.

As an added benefit, chewing gum while you are traveling can relieve discomfort and pressure buildup within your ears if you happen to be traveling through the elevated areas or flying.

4. Maintain Your Brushing and Flossing Routine as Best as You Can

We get it. It can be difficult to maintain your brushing and flossing routine when you’re traveling. Maybe you forgot your toothbrush at home. Maybe your friend borrowed your floss and forgot to return it to you. Either way, that shouldn’t stop you from being able to commit to keeping great dental hygiene.

Thankfully, many grocery stores along the way may sell the proper utensils you need to clean your teeth, like a brand new toothbrush or a pack of floss. These items can be stored in your backpack or luggage carrier, safe and sound for when you need them on your next trip.

5. Avoid Alcohol and Tobacco Products

Aside from being detrimental to your overall health, alcohol and tobacco can ruin your teeth.

Alcohol promotes plaque growth. In fact, people who suffer from alcohol use disorder usually have higher plaque levels than those that don’t. More plaque means more toxins that are released that irritate gums, facilitating gum disease. Higher levels of plaque make it three times more likely that you will experience permanent tooth loss.

Plaque levels aside, alcohol can also stain your teeth, especially if you are drinking red wine, a trait that is shared with tobacco.

Smoking tobacco, on the other hand, stains your teeth because of the nicotine and the tar that comes from the cigarettes. Smoking is also the main cause of oral cancers. Couple all of this with the fact that smoking also promotes bacterial plaque growth that causes gum disease and you can see why tobacco use should be completely avoided.

Even worse, smoking essentially starves your bloodstream of oxygen, making it more difficult for damaged gums—that were damaged because of the smoke or chew—to repair.

Smokers are 64% percent more likely to develop #gum #disease than non-smokers #JustSayNo Click To Tweet

Don’t forget to stop by Heroes Dental this Spring Break for a routine cleaning!

Spring Break can be the perfect time for a little spring cleaning, and we don’t mean washing the windows or dusting the house.

Contact our dentists at a location near you to schedule your cleaning before you head on out to celebrate spring festivities.

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