How Barodontalgia could ruin your holiday

Barodontalgia can ruin your holiday if your teeth aren't in tip top condition.  Image by Andrew Barker (via Shutterstock).

Say you've already booked your holiday from Leeds/Bradford Airport. Your passport is up to date, you've lost enough weight for the beach, and you're days away from packing up. What about your teeth? Before you think this is a silly question, dental health does play a part in your well deserved break. If you're 9,000 feet above sea level or above, the state of your teeth is a concern. You may have heard of a condition known as Barodontalgia.

Barodontalgia was first discovered during the Second World War. This followed on from reports of intense tooth pain by fighter pilots. They called it 'tooth squeeze'. Barodontalgia is caused by small air-filled pockets which can exist inside a cracked tooth, or one where the filling is starting to fail.

Travellers have been warned about this condition by leading North East England dentist, Dr. Richard Coates. His practice, the Riveredge Cosmetic Dentistry, is shared with Dr. Ken Harris. He said, “The change in pressure experienced during flying can cause these air pockets to expand, causing very intense pain.”

He also added it was "especially common at heights above 9,000 feet". With commercial flights flying at 30,000 feet, this problem can affect holidaymakers as well as fighter pilots. He also recommends calling into your dentist at least two months before your departure.

To avoid the possible perils of barodontalgia, we at The Smile Specialist Centre can also be of assistance. If you have any queries, feel free to call us on 01535 644005. Or fill in our online referral form. We'll be delighted to be of assistance.

Smile Specialist Centre, 17th August 2017.

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