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The Essential Guide to Oral Health for Bend’s Hiking Enthusiasts

Bend, Oregon is an outdoor paradise – home to some of the best hiking, biking, and skiing in the world. But besides being a great place to enjoy the outdoors, it also presents its own unique dental challenges – specifically, how to maintain healthy teeth and gums while engaging in physical activity.

For many of Bend’s hiking enthusiasts, the concern is not only how to keep their mouth fresh and clean after a day on the trails, but also how to avoid tooth damage and injury due to rock climbing, cycling, and other active pursuits. Fortunately, with the right approach to oral hygiene, as well as some practical tips for preventing injury, all of these concerns can be managed.

Oral Health Basics: Dental Care and Hygiene Tips for Bend Hikers

To maintain good dental health, all hikers should follow the basic oral hygiene routine of brush, floss, and rinse. However, there are some special considerations that can help to improve dental health when engaging in outdoor activity.

Brushing – Regular brushing is important to help remove food particles, bacteria, and plaque from the teeth and gums. But it is especially important after a hike, bike ride, or other physical activity. Brushing immediately after engaging in outdoor activity can help to remove bacteria and prevent tooth decay.

Flossing – Flossing helps to remove food particles and dental plaque from between the teeth, where toothbrushes cannot reach. For hikers, flossing is even more important, as it can help to remove food particles and other debris that may have been inhaled while hiking or biking.

Rinsing – Rinsing with a mouthwash or water after brushing and flossing is recommended to help remove any remaining food particles and plaque. It can also help to reduce bacteria and freshen the breath. For hikers, it is important to use an antibacterial mouthwash, which can help to kill the bacteria and reduce the risk of tooth and gum infections.

Preventing Tooth Damage: Tips for Bend Hikers

Hiking, biking, and other outdoor activities can sometimes result in accidental tooth damage. To help reduce this risk, hikers should try to follow these guidelines:

Use protective gear – When rock climbing or any other activity where there is a higher risk of injury, it is important to use protective gear such as helmets, mouthguards, and eye protection. If there is a chance of being hit in the mouth, a mouthguard can help to reduce the chance of a tooth injury.

Avoid eating while hiking – Eating while on the trails can increase the risk of injury as food particles can become lodged in the teeth and gums. It is best to wait until you reach a rest stop before eating, and then brush, floss, and rinse afterward.

Stay hydrated – Drinking plenty of water is important for hikers to stay hydrated, but it can also help to reduce the risk of tooth damage by helping to flush out any food particles and bacteria.


With the right approach to oral hygiene and some practical tips for reducing the risk of injury, all of Bend’s hiking enthusiasts can maintain a healthy smile. Brushing and flossing regularly, using an antibacterial mouthwash, and using protective gear can help reduce the risk of tooth and gum damage while enjoying all that Bend has to offer.