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3 Airplane Precautions for Pearly Whites

June 14, 2016

Travelers need to be organized—especially when it comes to teeth. So fasten your seatbelts and scan this safety card for your smile:

1. Airplane Water

It’s dry at your cruising altitude. High altitudes call for hydration, so drink up. On an airplane, sink and bottled water aren’t as interchangeable as peanuts and pretzels. Though there have been improvements to airline water in recent years, it’s still better to pretend like the fasten seatbelt sign is always illuminated. Drink bottled water or fill up a reusable water bottle before boarding when flying the friendly skies.

2. Tooth Pain

You may experience tooth pain in addition to your headache from that screaming baby (extra sympathy points if the baby belongs to you). Barodontalgia, AKA “tooth squeeze,” happens because of a change in barometric pressure during flight. The pain source can be caused by an incoming cavity or from a previous filling. Either way, schedule a dental exam when you touch down. And if you’re planning to have anesthetic dental treatment, steer clear of the runway for at least 48 hours following the procedure.

3. Bad Breath

Options are limited in airports; food has to be fast when you realize your plane is boarding. Once you’ve made it to your seat, you can finally relax and take a deep breath. But you may not want to. “Traveler’s breath” is what you get when you mix high altitude with that overpriced piece of pizza. Because of increased elevation, saliva production slows, forcing those leftover pepperoni particles to come out in the form of bad breath. Plan snacks accordingly to keep breath fresh. And never underestimate the power of packing those travel dental items too.

Safe travels, jet setters!