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Orthodontic Hygiene Tips for Summer Vacations from Colorado Orthodontics 

Orthodontic Hygiene Tips for Summer Vacations from Colorado Orthodontics 

As the summer sun begins to shine, families start planning their vacations, ready to explore new destinations and create lasting memories. While the idea of a summer vacation is exhilarating, maintaining orthodontic hygiene is crucial when you have a child with braces.  

Here at Colorado Orthodontics, we understand the importance of diligent braces maintenance and travel orthodontic care to ensure your child's treatment stays on track. In this guide, we'll provide you with essential tips for maintaining proper oral hygiene on the go, so your family can enjoy a worry-free summer vacation. 

Why Braces Maintenance Matters on Vacation 

Keeping up with orthodontic care during a vacation might seem daunting, but it's vital for several reasons: 

  • Preventing Dental Issues: Proper cleaning prevents plaque buildup, cavities, and gum disease. 
  • Protecting the Integrity of Braces: Maintenance ensures that brackets and wires stay intact and effective. 
  • Ensuring Steady Progress in Treatment: Consistent care helps the orthodontic treatment proceed without delays or setbacks. 
  1. Prepare a Comprehensive Travel Orthodontic Care Kit

Before embarking on your trip, make sure to pack a travel orthodontic care kit. This kit will help maintain your child's braces and oral hygiene on the go, ensuring they can stick to their regular routine even while away from home. 

Travel Orthodontic Care Kit Essentials: 

  • Toothbrush: A travel-sized, soft-bristled toothbrush is ideal for easy packing. 
  • Toothpaste: Fluoride toothpaste is a must. Opt for travel-sized tubes for convenience. 
  • Interdental Brushes: These are perfect for cleaning between wires and brackets. 
  • Floss: Regular floss or a small portable water flosser can be very effective. 
  • Orthodontic Wax: Useful for covering uncomfortable wires or brackets to prevent mouth irritation. 
  • Compact Mirror: Helpful for checking the cleanliness and condition of braces. 
  • Mouth Rinse: A small bottle of fluoride rinse can provide added protection. 
  • Pain Relievers: In case of discomfort, pack some ibuprofen or acetaminophen. 
  • Lip Balm: To keep lips moisturized and prevent drying or cracking. 

Having a well-prepared kit ensures your child has all the tools needed for effective braces maintenance, even when far from home. 

  1. Adhere to a Routine

Vacations often disrupt daily routines, but it’s essential to maintain your child's oral hygiene regimen to keep braces in optimal condition. 

Morning and Evening Routine: 

  • Morning: Use the toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to clean all around the brackets and wires. Follow up with interdental brushing and flossing to remove food particles. 
  • Evening: Repeat the brushing and flossing routine before bed, and finish with a fluoride mouth rinse for extra protection. 

Maintaining these routines ensures your child's teeth remain healthy, and their braces stay clean and functional. 

  1. Make Smart Food Choices

Summer vacations bring opportunities to indulge in various treats, which can be tough for kids with braces. Choosing the right foods is crucial for effective travel orthodontic care. 

Foods to Avoid: 

  • Sticky and Chewy Candies: Can get stuck in braces and are challenging to clean. 
  • Hard Candies and Nuts: May break brackets or wires. 
  • Carbonated and Sugary Drinks: Cause plaque and potential decay. 
  • Popcorn: The kernels can become lodged in braces, causing discomfort. 

Braces-Friendly Snacks: 

  • Soft Fruits: Bananas, berries, and grapes are gentle on braces. 
  • Dairy Products: Yogurt and soft cheese are both tasty and safe. 
  • Vegetables: Soft veggie sticks such as cucumbers and bell peppers. 
  • Soft Treats: Smoothies, soft granola bars, and ice cream without hard chunks.
  • Choosing braces-friendly snacks ensures your child enjoys their vacation treats without risking their orthodontic health. 
  1. Stay Hydrated

Hydration is crucial, especially during summer vacation. Drinking water helps keep the mouth clean and free from bacteria that could harm braces and teeth. 

Staying Hydrated Tips: 

  • Drink Water Regularly: Encourage your child to drink water throughout the day. 
  • Avoid Sugary Drinks: Soda and juice can lead to plaque. 
  • Carry a Water Bottle: Having water handy helps rinse the mouth after meals if brushing isn’t possible. 

Proper hydration supports overall health and maintains good oral hygiene. 

  1. Manage Orthodontic Emergencies

Even with the best planning, orthodontic emergencies can occur. Knowing how to handle these situations while traveling can save your vacation from interruption. 

Handling Common Orthodontic Issues: 

  • Loose Brackets: Secure them with orthodontic wax temporarily. 
  • Protruding Wires: Use sterilized nail clippers to trim the wire if it's causing discomfort, and cover the end with wax. 
  • Lost Aligners: Carry a backup set if possible, and contact us for advice. 

Prevention Tips: 

  • Daily Checks: Have your child regularly check their braces for any issues. 
  • Emergency Contact: Keep our contact info handy and reach out if you need guidance. 

Coloring Orthodontics provides phone support for any emergencies at the following numbers: 

  • Thornton Location: (303) 452-0077 
  • S Aurora Location: (303) 751-5700 

Being prepared for emergencies ensures minor issues don’t hinder your vacation. 

  1. Utilize Travel-Friendly Oral Hygiene Gadgets

Travel-friendly oral hygiene gadgets can simplify maintaining braces and dental health while on the go. 

Travel Gadgets: 

  • Portable Water Flosser: Effective for cleaning hard-to-reach areas around the braces. 
  • Travel-Sized Electric Toothbrush: Comprehensively cleans and comes with protective cases. 
  • Compact Orthodontic Kits: Pre-packed kits with all necessary braces cleaning tools.
  • Travel-friendly gadgets make it easier to maintain orthodontic hygiene away from home. 
  1. Schedule a Pre-Vacation Checkup

Before heading off on your vacation, it’s wise to schedule a pre-vacation checkup at Colorado Orthodontics. This ensures everything is in order and ready for your travels. 

Pre-Vacation Checkup Checklist: 

  • Examine Braces: Check for any loose brackets or wires. 
  • Adjustments: Make necessary adjustments or tightening. 
  • Supply Refill: Stock up on orthodontic supplies you'll need during your trip. 
  1. Educate Your Child

Teaching your child about the importance of maintaining their braces and oral hygiene empowers them to take responsibility, even on vacation. 

Key Points to Teach: 

  • Importance of Brushing and Flossing: Explain how it protects their teeth and braces. 
  • Identifying Problems: Help them recognize common issues like loose brackets or wires. 
  • Food and Drink Choices: Emphasize the foods to avoid and the reasons for it.
  • Educating your child fosters independent and proactive orthodontic care. 

A well-planned vacation doesn't have to compromise your child’s orthodontic health. By preparing a travel orthodontic care kit, sticking to a routine, making smart food choices, staying hydrated, managing emergencies, using travel-friendly oral hygiene gadgets, scheduling a pre-vacation checkup, and educating your child, you can ensure their braces and dental health are protected throughout your trip. 

At Colorado Orthodontics, we are dedicated to providing the best care for your child’s smile. Consider scheduling a checkup at one of our Thornton or S Aurora locations before you depart. Our expert team is here to help you prepare for a vacation full of fun and free of orthodontic worries. Safe travels and happy smiles! 

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