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It is a busy time of the year. Even if you aren’t traveling to see family or friends, everyone’s schedule gets a little busier. You should remember to brush your teeth at least twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once a day at a minimum. But if things get hectic during your holiday, and you find yourself short on time when it comes to taking care of your teeth, there are some stop-gap measures you can take. Bear in mind that while these suggestions are helpful they do not take the place of brushing your teeth for two minutes two times a day!

You might try keeping a travel or disposable toothbrush and a travel-size tube of toothpaste with you for brushing on the go. Even if you can’t take the full two minutes if you are on the road, or at the office or someone’s home, it is better than not brushing at all. Keep your toothbrush clean and dry and away from things that could contaminate it. If you find yourself with toothpaste but not a toothbrush, put a little toothpaste on your finger and scrub your teeth. No toothpaste? Castile soap, baking soda, or even salt can all be good substitutes until you can use the real thing. If worse comes to worst, you can even use a natural soap that doesn’t contain artificial scents or moisturizers.  While dental floss is easy to keep in a purse, backpack, briefcase or pocket, you may want to may also keep a packet of floss picks on hand. They are small, come with dental floss and you can also reach under your wires with them if you wear braces.  

Chewing sugarless gum for twenty minutes is a great way to stimulate the production of saliva, which can clean away food particles and combat the acids in your mouth. Letting sugarless hard candy melt in your mouth can also increase the production of saliva. If you are dining out, a chewing a little parsley or a little mint can freshen your breath.

Although these ideas are good in a pinch, you should always brush twice a day for at least two minutes with a fluoride toothpaste and floss once a day. Drink plenty of water, eat a balanced diet and see your dentist twice a year for your routine appointments. If it is time for your cleaning and exam, or if you are looking for a dentist for yourself or your family, then it’s time for you to meet our dentist. Dr. Sonney L Chong! If you live in the Sacramento, California, area, you can call 916-421-3057 to plan your visit to Sonney Chong DMD.