What to Do If You Have Dental Problems Abroad

Nothing can spoil that vacation you’ve been dreaming about for years like a sudden tooth ache. Depending on where you’re traveling and when you’ll start feeling the pain, there’s even a possibility that you won’t be able to get the proper medical attention. Also, people often decide to power through, enjoy their travel and deal with the tooth issues when they return. Sometimes, that is the optimal option, but in other cases, waiting can make the problem worse (especially when warm climate and flying is involved) and fixing the problem later could be much more costly and painful.


If you’ve recently had a dental surgery, it might be best to postpone the flight for at least a couple of days. Bring plenty of gauze with you because high altitudes might cause your gums to bleed. If you develop fever of other symptoms of infection, alert the on-board medical staff immediately. Take some painkillers about 30 minutes before boarding because that’s how long it takes for them to kick in, and stick to soft foods. Avoid coffee or any other hot beverage and go for juices and sodas.


Make sure your travel insurance covers dental issues as well. Ask around about the quality of care that you might receive in the country you’re visiting. Also, have the contact information of your embassy and ask them for help if available. Consult your dentist before you go and collect all the necessary information about your previous treatments. This will greatly help the dentists that are treating you abroad. Having dental work done in an unfamiliar place can be scary, but as long as you stick to dentists approved by your insurance plan, you should be fine.

dentist-1639683_960_720 (1)A checkup

It might be a good idea to schedule a complete checkup before you go. Turn to Sydney orthodontics to check your gums and have your teeth cleaned a couple of days in advance. That way you can avoid any possible side effects kicking in once you are on board. This is also a good time to get vaccinated for hepatitis B, which you can get from improperly cleaned dental instruments. This is only necessary if you’re traveling to an underdeveloped country. Such vacations usually need to be administered months ahead.


With all these preparations in place, emergencies can still happen and it may take a while until you’re able to receive the proper dental care. In case you’re experiencing tooth pain, clean your mouth with warm water. Use a toothbrush or dental floss to remove the food from your teeth, especially in the area that is causing you pain. You can use painkillers prescribed by your doctor, but never put them against your gums or near the aching tooth. They can burn the gum tissue and cause much more serious problems. If the pain persists for longer than a day, contact a dentist.

A broken tooth

A broken or chipped tooth is a bit more serious issue and it would require professional medical attention, but there are still things you can do on your own to ease the pain. Start by cleaning your mouth with warm water. Then apply some pressure with a piece of gauze for about 10 minutes. You can also use a tea bag to stop the bleeding. Until you get to the dentist, use a temporary dental cement to cover the part of the cracked tooth. These can be found in most drugstores.


There’s no reason for a toothache to spoil your holiday. Schedule a checkup before you go abroad and make sure to buy insurance in case something happens. Other smaller mishaps could most of the time be fixed with items found in any hotel bathroom.





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