Summer Travel Guide: Braces Edition

With summer vacation around the corner, whether it’s a time for staying home, pursuing summer jobs, or embarking on adventures, braces can bring a unique element to the season for all individuals involved. Today, Clauss Orthodontics presents The Official Summer Travel Guide: Braces Edition!

Taking This Show On the Road

This season highlights the importance of managing your braces while you’re out and about. Whether or not you already have a dental kit on hand, here are some essential items Dr. Clauss will recommend you have with you when you’re traveling:

  • An orthodontic toothbrush boasts soft bristles and a compact, angled head, facilitating thorough cleaning around braces and brackets.
  • Keeping elastic bands handy is a good tip; they can temporarily secure loose brackets until you can visit our office.
  • Orthodontic wax serves as a reliable aid for emergencies or discomfort, providing relief by covering sharp or protruding pieces that may irritate the lips or cheeks.
  • Interdental brushes come in handy for navigating tight spaces between brackets.
  • Floss threaders offer convenience over traditional dental floss, easily accessing areas beneath wires and in the back of the mouth.
  • A compact mirror or dental mirror aids in effectively observing all areas of the mouth during cleaning sessions.
  • Travel-sized toothpaste proves ideal for on-the-go outings, while orthodontic mouthwash helps ensure freshness even during vacations.

It’s crucial to pack these items thoughtfully, considering your surroundings. For example, if you’re going to the beach, take the heat into consideration and store it at the bottom of your larger bag.

Summer Travel Guide: Braces Edition

Key Tips for Your Vacation

These tips from Dr. Clauss will prove useful whether you’re staying here in the northeast, traveling to a more tropical setting, or even embarking overseas!

  1. Stay Hydrated: It’s vital to stay hydrated in general, but especially during the summer with braces, as it helps prevent dry mouth, a common concern that can accelerate decay.
  2. Maintain Oral Hygiene: Stick to your oral care routine by brushing and flossing after every meal, especially after consuming sugary snacks or drinks.
  3. Use a Water Flosser: Invest in a water flosser for thorough cleaning, reaching inaccessible areas of the mouth more effectively.
  4. Protect Your Braces: Be cautious during sports activities, particularly high-contact sports like football or basketball. Mouthguards are crucial for protecting your braces, even during less contact-intensive activities such as volleyball or kickball.
  5. Keep an Eye on Kids: If these tips apply to your child, remind them to follow these guidelines and periodically check in to ensure rules are being followed. Clauss Orthodontics specializes in children’s care, so feel free to inquire about best practices.
  6. Choose Braces-Friendly Foods: Enjoy summer treats that are gentle on your braces, like fruits, yogurt, and ice cream, as well as grilled fish and vegetables. Avoid sticky and chewy foods that can damage your braces, even if they’re tempting at theme parks or abroad!
  7. Protect Your Braces at the Beach or Pool: When swimming, be mindful of potential damage to your braces from sand, chlorine, or salt water. Consider wearing a mouthguard while swimming for added protection.
  8. Protect Your Lips: We recommend wearing a lip balm with SPF to protect your lips from sunburn, especially during long outdoor activities. Lots of patients overlook this!
  9. Protect Your Braces from Sun Exposure: Direct sunlight can cause some discomfort, especially when you have metal braces. Wear a hat or seek some shade to minimize remedy this.
  10.  Rinse After Swimming: After swimming in a pool, remember to rinse your mouth with clean water to remove any chlorine residue. Chlorine can discolor your braces over time, a detail you may not realize.
  11. Attend Orthodontic Appointments: Don’t skip your regular check-ups with your orthodontist if you’re not away for the entire summer break. Staying on track is essential for achieving optimal results. If you’ll be absent for a while, schedule check-ups before your departure.
  12. Remember the Goal: Remember, discomfort and inconvenience from braces are temporary. Stay motivated by focusing on the end result—a straight, healthy smile.
  13.  Enjoy Yourself: Most importantly, enjoy your fun in the sun! Don’t let braces put a damper on your summer fun. We’re here to address any concerns and ensure you make the most of your summer with braces.
Summer Travel Guide: Braces Edition

A Well-Earned Break

Don’t hesitate to reach out to our Clauss Orthodontics team if you have any additional questions. The more information you share with our doctors about your summer plans, the more personalized advice we can provide! For example, if you’re planning an international trip, you may have specific concerns that are different from those of domestic trips. We prioritize understanding our patients on an individual level to deliver exceptional treatment and care. To schedule your first or next appointment with Dr. Clauss, you can reach out to our Watertown or Middlebury offices.