Particularly if you are on a long flight, perhaps overnight, then being able to take your electric toothbrush with you in your hand luggage is a must so you can clean your teeth during the flight to help freshen up.
The good news is that electric toothbrushes, whatever type of rechargeable battery they contain, are allowed both in hand luggage or in checked bags.
If you are going on a short break and only taking hand luggage with you then it is obviously important to be able to clean your teeth while you are away. Even if you normally use an electric toothbrush you could of course just take a manual toothbrush with you, or even buy one at your destination. But if you are like me and feel that you can only clean your teeth properly with your electric toothbrush then you will want to take it with you.
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Electric toothbrushes are generally rechargeable and therefore contain a rechargeable battery, more often than not these days, a lithium battery. Lithium batteries are the ones that airport security have the biggest problem with. This is because of the small possibility of them overheating and catching fire.
I have taken my electric toothbrush in hand luggage and also my checked luggage all over the world without a problem. This is because, if the battery is built in, or removable, but properly inserted, they have little or no chance of shorting, overheating or catching fire so they are not a problem.
Make sure that your toothbrush has some charge in it. This is because as you may be asked to switch it on when you go through airport security. If you cannot then there is a small possibility that it may be confiscated.
Almost anything that contains a rechargeable battery can potentially present a problem at airport security. To find out more you may wish to read – Can you take lithium batteries on a plane?
Since toothpaste is treated as a liquid for airport security regulation purposes, you cannot take toothpaste in your carry on unless it is 3.4oz (100ml) or less. It must also go in your clear resealable quart-sized liquids bag when you go through security. Remember, you cannot take a larger tube of toothpaste with very little toothpaste in it. It is the size of the tube that is important, not the amount of toothpaste it actually contains.
For the full rules on liquids, and what are considered liquids, under these rules read my complete guide. Maximum liquid permitted in carry on on a plane. TSA 3-1-1 liquids rule.
Taking an electric toothbrush in hand luggage is not much good without toothpaste if you are intending to clean your teeth during the flight. So you have two options:
1. Buy a small travel tube of toothpaste that is 3.4oz or less in size
2. If there are stores in the departure area of the airport you are flying from (after you pass through security) then you may be able to buy some then. You can buy any size tube then.
If you traveling with only your carry on bag, and aren’t planning to clean your teeth during the flight, but just want the toothbrush for while you are away, then as well as the above two options you could also just buy a tube when you arrive.
What kind of battery is in an electric toothbrush?
A rechargeable electric toothbrush will normally have either a NiMH or a Lithium-ion battery. Some cheaper electric toothbrushes use disposable replaceable batteries.
Do Oral B toothbrushes have lithium batteries?
Almost all modern Oral B rechargeable toothbrushes have lithium-ion batteries in them. You can check your model out on their website to see what kind of batteries are fitted in it.
Other airport security questions you may have
As well as whether you can take an electric toothbrush in hand luggage you may also be interested in these: