Amusement park resorts and vacations offer memorable experiences, exciting rides, and lots of great food. While on vacation, you also want to consider your dental health. While you do not need to brush your teeth between rides, amusement parks offer a lot of temptations and possible hazards to your oral health.
At the same time you book an amusement park vacation, you should book a dental appointment for the days following the trip. Learn about the various factors a dentist will look for and how an exam can benefit your oral health for the long haul.
- Sweet Treats & Cavities
Amusement parks are known for a variety of sweet treats like ice cream, cotton candy, and packaged candy. Many locations have their own signature desserts loaded with sugars. While sugar is alright in moderation, the sweet treats at an amusement park can quickly add up and impact your oral health.
If you spend a whole day at an amusement park without any proper oral treatment, you could make your mouth vulnerable to cavities. Sugar breaks down and can cause enamel to wear away. Even if you don’t have a full cavity formed in your mouth, you could have soft spots forming.
Dentists will perform x-rays to get a complete look inside the mouth and then follow up the x-ray with a detailed oral exam. They will see where cavities may form and some of the areas you need to focus on for future brushing and flossing.
The sooner you seek out a dental exam, the better the chances of catching a cavity before it becomes too big or results in the need for a treatment like a filling. Ideally, you want to have fresh water to drink with sugary treats to help wash away some of the sugar. Pocket-sized flossers could also help eliminate plaque build-up as well.
- Drinks & Tooth Stains
Along with cavities, amusement park treats could lead to tooth stains. You may seek out caffeinated beverages like coffee or tea to help you through the day. Vending machine products like sodas are common at amusement parks. Dessert drinks like slushies, milkshakes, and fruit-based drinks could all lead to tooth stains as well.
For example, many berry-based drinks could lead to tooth stains. Darker berries like blueberries and blackberries contain pigments and acids that could lead directly to stains on your front teeth and areas where you cannot see.
After a trip, consider a full mouth exam and tooth whitening treatments. A full treatment will remove stains from your teeth and give you a naturally white smile. While one amusement park trip will not likely stain your teeth right away, it could become a major contributing factor, especially if you take amusement park trips on an annual basis.
- Intense Rides & Tooth Grinding
Amusement parks feature some pretty intense rides like roller coasters or haunted adventures. As you go through rides, you may not realize how often you clench your jaw or grind your teeth together. When you grind down your teeth, you could cause further damage like chips and cracks.
A dentist can compare previous x-rays or dental work to see major changes in your teeth. A dentist can also see any tooth grinding damage through a basic oral exam. The tooth grinding could expand beyond just an amusement park as well. For example, you may grind your teeth in your sleep.
If a dentist notices major tooth grinding, they may recommend a daytime mouth guard for future amusement park trips. A daytime mouth guard is clear in color and shaped to fit behind your back molars. The mouth guard will prevent tooth to tooth contact when you are on intense rides.
With a little damage prevention, you will protect your teeth and prevent the need for veneers, fillings, or crowns for damaged teeth.
- Dehydration & Dry Mouth
Many amusement parks are located in warmer climates or only open during warmer months of the year. A full day in the heat and humidity could lead to a dry mouth. Going on fast rides could also lead to a dry mouth as you whip and cruise at high speeds. A dry mouth allows bacteria to grow and thrive. When you mix in sugary foods, the problem only gets worse.
Extended dry mouth could cause gums to inflame and lead to problems like gingivitis. Along with staying hydrated at an amusement park, a full dental cleaning will help eliminate bacteria in the gums. A dentist will recognize bacteria growth in the gums and can spot inflamed gums quickly.
Advanced treatment options may include a deep cleaning of the teeth that goes beyond a typical cleaning appointment. A dentist could also recommend advanced cleaning products to use at home.
Book your post-vacation appointment with us at Valley Oak Dental Group. Our experienced dental team will treat your mouth, address problems, and ensure you walk away with a happy smile.