Healthy Snacks That Won’t Send Your Kid (or You) to the Dentist
It’s estimated that almost 40 percent of children have dental cavities by the time they reach kindergarten, and poor dental health in kids has a strong link to underperformance in school. Children with cavities are three times more likely to skip school because of physical or emotional pain. Maintaining your child’s oral care helps lay the foundation for a successful life.
Good daily oral hygiene plays an important role in maintaining strong, healthy teeth. However, oral hygiene practices are not the only factors to consider, especially in children. We are all aware that candy and soda can rot our children’s teeth (and ours), but there are other foods you might not think about that are harming your oral health.
Foods that are high in sugar, like soda, can cause cavities, and highly acidic foods can lead to enamel erosion. Lemon juice is considered one of the most acidic foods, and drinks like lemonade can pack a double punch, containing both acidic lemon juice and high amounts of sugar.
Many crackers and white breads are both sticky and produce sugar when broken down. While handing your child a few saltines as a snack doesn’t seem harmful, crackers can stick to your teeth, holding sugars in place throughout the day.
This isn’t to say that your child should never have any of these foods. Like with most things pertaining to your health, moderation is key. Also make sure you brush and floss twice a day to remove any sugar, acid, or other harmful particles from your teeth.
- Cheese may be a good snack because it has been shown to lower the acid levels in the mouth.
- Milk is similar to cheese. Drinking a glass of milk can help lower the acid levels produced by plaque bacteria.
- Raisins that don’t have added sugar are a good source of phytochemicals, which may kill cavity-causing plaque bacteria.
- Leafy greens are high in phosphorous, which can help keep tooth enamel strong and healthy.
- Cranberries contain polyphenols, which may keep plaque from sticking to the teeth.
Regular Dental Visits
While what you eat and your daily hygiene habits play a balanced role in your oral health, it is important to schedule regular dental visits. At your dental visits, you will undergo a more thorough cleaning than can be achieved at home, and any signs of cavity formation can be caught and treated early. Maintaining this balance plays an important role in cavity prevention in your children.
Schedule your next dental visit with Dr. Fiss to discuss more daily habits to help strengthen and fortify your teeth. Call our office at (312) 951-5230 or contact us online.