Going away from home presents unique challenges if you have dentures. Because dentures are rather costly, it is important to make a care plan that includes where you go, what you eat, how you will clean your teeth and other essential denture maintenance practices. This routine should be well thought-out and stuck to as much as possible. The following are some tips to help you through planning and your life away from home.
1. Choose your food
If you're going to be staying in a hotel and eating from restaurants, plan where you'll have your meals as well as possible meal choices depending on what you eat at home. If your dentures are still new, you'll want soft foods such as fish, eggs, cooked vegetables and puddings among others. Avoid extra-hard or sticky foods. For long trips, carry acceptable snacks for yourself in case your stopover points/plane food doesn't provide manageable snacks for you. The last thing you want to get is a chipped denture tooth because you ate the wrong kind of food from desperation.
2. Carry water and mouthwash
Carry along your denture 'first-aid' kit, which must include a small-size mouthwash. In a home setting, you can flush and brush you dentures after a meal, but this isn't always possible when taking a long journey. Rinse in the plane/stopover bathroom with clean water and mouthwash to remove any food particles that may stick to your dentures.
Have a bottle of water close by to keep flushing particles down as you snack along your trip to prevent possible infection. This will also help to maintain fresh breath and prevent dry-mouth, which is a problem some denture wearers grapple with. Dry-mouth can encourage bacterial growth and resultant decay.
3. Plan for denture cleaning
In addition, don't forget to pack your denture cleaning tools, which include specialised denture brushes (you can buy a soft-bristled brush in their absence – avoid free hotel toothbrushes if they have hard bristles). Carry along a storage container with a lid, where you'll place your dentures to soak every night. Don't forget a nonabrasive cleanser, as you may not find one where you're going.
4. Make sure they fit
Plan a visit to the dentist before your journey, particularly if your dentures are new. Report any problems you're having, such as slipping or irritation. You may not be able to find affordable/quality care on your trip, and leaving such problems unattended to not only affects your comfort, but it may also leave you with oral infections. You can also talk to your dentist about having denture adhesive to make eating out less difficult.