The snacks that you choose to give to your child can have a very significant impact on their oral health and, subsequently, on their overall health. The wrong snack choices can lead to tooth decay and cavities, while the right snack choices can help strengthen enamel and improve oral health.
Snacks That Can Contribute to Tooth Decay
Here are some snacks that should be kept out of your child's plate at home and out of their lunchbox at school:
- Sugar-packed foods and drinks
The sugar found in candies, soft drinks, and fruit juices provides ample food for plaque-causing bacteria to grow in number and cause dental health problems.
- Citrus fruits and juices
Acid is another dangerous culprit that can lead to cavities and tooth decay, and it is found in abundance in citrus fruits and juices.
- Sticky foods
Sticky foods can get stuck on and between teeth for long periods of time, promoting the growth of bad bacteria.
Snacks That Can Help Prevent Tooth Decay
Replace the above snacks with the ones listen below, and you'll be helping to prevent toothaches and fillings for your child in the future:
- Fruits and veggies with low sugar concentrations
Fruits and veggies that are low in sugar and high in water are a great snacking option. These include celery, cucumbers, melons, and pears.
Cheese is a good choice of snack because it causes the mouth to produce saliva, which can help flush away food particles.
Water is the perfect drink for good oral health because it poses no harm to your child's teeth whatsoever, and, like saliva, it helps to keep the mouth clean.
Caring for Your Child's Smile
If you have any more questions about the right snacks to give your child, or about caring for your child's teeth in general, then Alberta Health has a great PDF document entitled "A Parent's Guide to Healthy Teeth for Children" found here that you should definitely take a look at.
You should also always take your questions and concerns to an Edmonton dental clinic such as those of the Azarko Dental Group. Proper snacking at home is important for preventing tooth decay and cavities, but regular dental cleanings and examinations are also crucial for making sure that your child's teeth stay healthy and strong.