As a parent, it’s your responsibility to make sure your kids’ teeth are healthy and strong throughout their entire childhood. Although the most important thing you can do to assist your kids with their dental issues is to regularly visit your family dentist, the next step is to make sure that you’re not buying too many foods and drinks that cause serious teeth problems.
Again, consult with your family dentist on major dental issues, but beware of these popular foods and drinks that can damage your teeth.
Energy Drinks and Sports Drinks Kids love fun drinks like Gatorade, Powerade, and Propel, but they are actually quite damaging to your children’s teeth. It won’t hurt to buy an individual Gatorade here or there, but regularly buying cases of these sports drinks can do serious damage. As much as sports drinks are harmful to your kids’ teeth, researchers have found that exposure to energy drinks like Red Bull, Monster, and Rockstar results in twice as much enamel loss as sports drinks (3.1% to 1.5%).
Gummy Vitamins Although children love the taste and look of gummy vitamins, they are not as great for their teeth as you might think. Because these snacks are both chewy and sticky, they adhere to your children’s teeth for a long period of time. Pieces of these vitamins can get stuck in the grooves and in between teeth, which can lead to severe cavities. There are plenty of vitamins available, however, that aren’t as sticky and can go down much easier for your kids.
Popcorn Popcorn is such a perfect snack for kids. It’s easy to make, it’s easy to serve, and there is usually enough to go around for the entire family. Unfortunately, popcorn can ruin your kids’ teeth if they eat too much of it. Not only is popcorn typically covered in butter and sometimes unhealthy powdered cheese, but the pieces can get stuck in between teeth for hours, resulting in damaged tooth enamel and cavities. Getting a small bag of popcorn at the movies once in a while isn’t too bad, but if you rely too much on popcorn around your home, your kids are going to need to visit the family dentist a few more times.
In addition to regularly visiting the family dentist, make sure your kids aren’t eating and drinking all these unhealthy products too much. If you want to talk to experienced pediatric dentists about healthy food and drink alternatives for your kids to enjoy, contact Smilez Pediatric Dental Group.
As a parent, you want to do everything you can to ensure your child is healthy from the very start. You might think that early oral health isn’t a huge concern. But just because your child will eventually lose their baby teeth doesn’t mean you don’t need to worry about tooth decay in your toddler. Without proper care, your child could potentially suffer significant issues before the Tooth Fairy ever arrives. Below, we’ll take a look at three ways parents can prevent tooth decay in their young children.
Limit Sugary Drinks Ideally, you should be limiting the amount of juice and other sugary drinks your child consumes anyway. But this is especially important at nighttime. Fill sippy cups or bottles with water in lieu of milk, juice, or other beverages. A 2012 study published by the Journal of Pediatric Dentistry found that 65% of parents who used bottled water had no idea about the fluoride levels it contained. While fluoride can help overall oral health in older children, filtered water is usually a better choice for toddlers. And when your child does drink anything other than water, make sure it’s consumed quickly. This limits the amount of time a toddler’s teeth are exposed to the sugars that can eventually lead to tooth decay.
Brush And Floss Regularly One way to foster lifelong hygiene habits is by starting early. Be sure to floss and brush with a soft-bristled toothbrush at least twice a day and after consumption of snacks and sweets. Do not use toothpastes that contain fluoride until your child has reached two years of age or so. Tooth brushes should be held at a 45-degree angle ; brush for at least two minutes and be sure not to brush too hard. As they get older, you should check their handiwork to ensure they’re brushing and flossing effectively. Your pediatric dentist can also help solidify the importance of proper oral care.
Schedule Dental Visits Some parents are under the assumption that their children don’t need to visit the dentist until they get older. But you should actually schedule your child’s first appointment when their baby teeth first start to appear or before their first birthday. Your dentist will monitor kids’ growth and make certain they’re taking good care of their baby teeth. If a child experiences decay or infection when they still have baby teeth, this actually can have a big impact on their oral health throughout their lives. By making dental visits a part of their routine from the beginning, your child will learn that there are rewards (sometimes literal ones!) for brushing and flossing properly.
Early oral habits are key to living a long, healthy life. If you’re looking for qualified, caring pediatric dentists in your area, Smilez Pediatric Dental Group is here to help. For more information, contact us today.