Travelling with teeth

Travelling with teeth

Well of course, leaving them behind is out of the question so if something goes wrong when you are travelling: don’t panic, try these solutions before assuming your trip is ruined

The most common self-treatable dental problems are:

Tooth brush abrasion

Symptoms - hot, cold and often sweet sensitivity up near the gum line. This is because you are scrubbing at your teeth with that new travel toothbrush that is a bit weird and hard.

Treatment- STOP SCRUBBING YOUR TEETH, brush gently and thoroughly. After brushing, place a small amount of toothpaste for sensitive teeth on the touchy area and leave it there to soak in.

Sinus pain

Symptoms- lingering ache of the upper premolars and molars and the pain changes when you tilt your head forward or jolt from walking downstairs. The new surroundings may be getting up your nose or you have picked up a cold from the plane/the bus/your partner.

Treatment- see a chemist for some kind of sinus clearing medication

TMJ-Jaw joint pain

Symptoms- pain just in front of the ear, difficulty opening wide and the jaw may not feel like it is in the right place, it can also be associated with a temple headache. You have strained your joint, probably due to that awkward nap on the plane/the bus/your partner

Treatment- take anti-inflammatories, eat soft food and don’t open wide

Gum pain

Symptoms- Feels like an ache rather than a throb and it hurts in a specific spot rather than a vague pain. The gum is often red and tender and there may be a pressure feeling.

Treatment- floss the area going under the gum even/especially if it is tender. Be thorough and masochistic; ask yourself “what would Jo do?”

Cracked teeth

Symptoms- Short sharp pain when you chew something firm, no pain when not chewing on it.

Treatment- Avoid using the tooth until you get home, but sometimes cracks lead to

Broken teeth

A big chunk of tooth breaks off leaving a sensitive tooth with a sharp edge. The sensitivity will pass in a day or two but the sharp bit needs an emery board to smooth it off or chewing gum to fill the gap

For these last problems you are in trouble and need to find a dentist:


Symptoms- spontaneous, throbbing pain that comes and goes. Can be difficult to pin point the tooth that is causing the problem. Can be accompanied by swelling, if you have antibiotics with you, start taking them and hope it will settle long enough for you to reach help

Split tooth

Symptoms- severe pain suddenly comes on in a tooth. Pain washes over you like a wave and is quite unbearable. You need to have the tooth extracted now!

T³ (tooth trouble tools): soft toothbrush, floss/interdental brushes, painkillers,

emery board, chewing gum, antibiotics (if you have them)


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