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I'm Afraid of My Romanian Toothpaste

I do like to shop in local stores for travel supplies. Why bring them from home when they can be purchased upon arrival?
I began this current trip (Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Serbia, Hungary and The Netherlands) with toothpaste purchased in Madrid (RS's Best of Barcelona and Madrid). I ran out in Bucharest, so I went shopping for more with my friend and tour guide Ana Adamoae. We went to a pharmacy near the western edge of old town, and I bought replacement toothpaste.
The brand I bought is so zesty and stimulating, I have anxiety about using it as it makes my mouth clammer in reaction. Just last night, the effects were sufficiently distracting, I had difficulty falling asleep.
The texture is odd, too.....more like silver polish.
My teeth look great, gums happy, so I should be pleased. But it's mid afternoon, and I'm already aware of what lies ahead, later this evening.
Whammy at ten o'clock.....here we go, again!

Posted by
5570 posts

My dentist says that toothpaste is less important than physical cleansing action. Relax for a few days and brush with just water. Have a nice vacation. It's hard to believe big international brands are not available somewhere in Bucharest. Why not go into a store you would normally avoid in an effort to "live local"?

Posted by
1040 posts

Doug, you made me laugh. The idea of fearing your toothpaste is weird. I am curious why you had to go to a pharmacy to buy toothpaste. Isn’t it available I grocery stores? And, I second the previous poster’s question — are there no international brands available in a city the size of Bucharest? Hope you’re enjoying your trip despite your toothpaste phobia. Can’t wait to hear about it at the next travel meeting.

Posted by
13211 posts

I love German toothpaste and try to buy some when I am there. It has a distinct tingly feel. Apparently there is some ingredient that is not allowed in the US. Germandeli used to sell it but hasn’t for years.

Posted by
7990 posts

My friend had an allergic reaction to a toothpaste she had bought in France, face swelled up and she was denied boarding of her flight home until the swelling was done.

Posted by
28107 posts

Sorry your new one is a bit "zingy".

Personally, I've never eaten silver polish but I think I see what you mean.

Although all sorts of brands in all sorts of flavours and textures are available here in the UK I always stock up on Migros supermarket Fresh Mint toothpaste at their supermarkets in Switzerland. A lot of it winds up past its "Best Before" dates because I can only stock up when I'm actually there but it doesn't matter. It has been my only choice for over 15 years.....

To each their own...

Posted by
1955 posts

I'd suggest using your tooth brush WITHOUT the toothpaste......your teeth will be fine for a few days.

If you want to have some fun when you get home, give the toothpaste to some advanced chemistry students at your local university to find out what's in it (or maybe you would really rather not know...LOL).

If you can find baking soda (if you must have something other than a toothbrush and plain water) that could be used for a short-term situation.

Posted by
3493 posts

Maybe brush with the toothpaste in the morning. Sounds like it would be a great way to wake up!

Posted by
996 posts

While I am a huge fan of the 'brush with vodka' suggestion, I understand your feelings. I had to buy toothpaste in Morocco. It says it's Colgate, yes? But I swear it tastes/works differently.

(That's not a bad thing. Just an observation.)

Anyway, the rest of us may be begging to know what kind of toothpaste you bought. Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip!!

Posted by
1787 posts

The question about whether it's available in grocery stores reminded me of my last trip to NY City. We looked all over the grocery store for toothpaste and finally found it right at the cashier's station like cigarettes are in other parts of the country. Is this an item that is often shoplifted??

Posted by
745 posts

By contrast, my Bulgarian sun block seems fine - at least I think it's sun block. Packaged with Bulgarian text and written with the Cyrillic alphabet, for all I know, it could be leather conditioner. However, at some point in the aging process, they're pretty much the same.

Posted by
396 posts

This has got to be the best title ever for a post on the travel forum.. was getting a little bored on the Greece forum due to the millionth post of 'what island should I visit?', and voila, boredom abated : )

Posted by
2051 posts

Agreeing with Lia. This has been such a joy to read-loving all the humorous replies! And especially the one regarding leather conditioner"......

Posted by
6877 posts

I grew up with Polish toothpaste as a child (I lived in Poland for my first 7 years or so in the early 70s) and ended up with "Eastern European teeth" (meaning weak), as my dentist says. The toothpaste was either chocolate or blueberry flavored and it had no fluoride! I think as a tourist who is visiting only temporarily, much damage won't be done...LOL. Relax and enjoy the cultural variations. No need to run to international chains for everything.

Posted by
15045 posts

Eeew, that reminds me of the one time I tried Israeli toothpaste - definitely gritty. I think I held out for a full week before tossing it. American toothpaste has been available here for as long as I can remember, 2 or 3 times the price. I don't even know if there are any locally made brands! I'll be your toothpaste would clean silver really well.

You could use table salt as an alternative, but it might not be any less unpleasant.

Posted by
5697 posts

And then there was the trip when my husband said "this toothpaste doesn't have that minty fresh taste" just as I was about to ask "have you seen my tube of foot cream ?" Only happened once -- we were more careful, and he had no ill side effects.

Posted by
2349 posts

When the kids were small, and we'd run out of grown up toothpaste, I'd sometimes have to use their bubble gum flavor stuff. You know your teeth are clean, but they sure don't feel like it. But I wasn't scared!

Posted by
1353 posts

I have a nephew who when visiting Western Europe bought what he thought was contact solution. Turned out to be mouthwash. That was a shocking surprise:). He grew up in England so was used to buying "non American" products.

Posted by
3339 posts

The question about whether it's available in grocery stores reminded
me of my last trip to NY City. We looked all over the grocery store
for toothpaste and finally found it right at the cashier's station
like cigarettes are in other parts of the country. Is this an item
that is often shoplifted??

What makes you think of shoplifting?? LOL Things kept by cash registers are there to encourage impulse purchases. I've never seen toothpaste at the registers at our grocery stores. They're usually in the aisle with mouthwash, floss, etc.

The brand I bought is so zesty and stimulating, I have anxiety about
using it as it makes my mouth clammer in reaction. Just last night,
the effects were sufficiently distracting, I had difficulty falling
asleep.

Zesty and stimulating....are you sure what you bought was really toothpaste? :-)

Posted by
4592 posts

Definitely an entertaining post! You can polish your silverware when you’re back home! Reminds me of the time my husband put a small box of “laundry detergent “ in our cart - the day before we would join our RS Italy tour. It had a drawing of a black shirt. Luckily, I compared it to the others on the shelf because it was black dye!

Posted by
401 posts

One of my habits is to buy weird (to me) toothpaste in countries I visit to see what it's like. For example, the bright red toothpaste Email in France ("émail" is French for enamel, as in tooth enamel) or the Euthymol toothpaste I picked up recently in Ireland. I knew it was going to be good when the label boasted of the "distinctive strong taste of Euthymol" (whatever the heck that is). It tastes like wintergreen

Posted by
2144 posts

Thankful for this topic as I’m going to the dentist this morning for a crown! Hopefully I won’t have to have a root canal on this tooth. I have something to think and laugh about while the dentist is drilling my tooth.