What snacks are best for my child's teeth?
No matter what age you are, what you eat can affect your oral health. Cavities occur when you have plaque buildup metabolizing sugar and turning it into acid that attacks tooth enamel. Eating foods that are unhealthy can contribute to plaque and tooth decay. However, we know it can be an epic battle getting kids to eat healthy, especially when it comes to the idea of a healthy snack. Learn some helpful tips from the team at Byers Station Dental in Chester Springs, PA about snacks that play the double duty of being suitable and healthy for your kid's teeth.
Healthy snacks for your kid's teeth
Most people realize that diet and exercise play an important role in keeping your body healthy. However, do you recognize a healthy mouth is just as important? Tooth decay is not only an adult problem but also one of the leading dental issues for children. An increased frequency of snacking throughout the day only increases the risk of developing cavities, especially if brushing or flossing immediately afterward is not an option. At times, kids need in-between snacks to keep them going. However, parents can start early by choosing snacks for their children wisely. Instead of limiting high sugar snacks, try to have them only once a day when your child can brush their teeth afterward. Another option is incorporating healthy snacks throughout the day, when needed, like the following:
- Whole-grain crackers
- Celery sticks, carrots, broccoli, or cucumber slices
- Popcorn (air-popped)
- Fresh fruit, like watermelon, grapes, apples, pears, and oranges
- Yogurt (low-sugar), cheese, or other dairy products
- Nuts or seeds
- Baked tortilla chips or chips
What doesn't make the dentist-approved snack list?
Chester Springs, PA parents may think their children are at risk of developing cavities if they eat a lot of candy. However, it is not the candy itself but the sugar or carbohydrates in snacks or foods that produce enamel-attacking acid. When we drink or eat snacks all day long, bacteria in the mouth feed on the process by making an acid that attacks tooth enamel. Kids who constantly snack on the go when racing to sports events or other activities are at risk of developing cavities, even if it is pretzels, chips, or crackers. Here are a few snacks or foods to limit or avoid:
- Sugary sweets or chewy treats, like cake, ice cream, hard candy, or lollipops
- Bagels or muffins
- Soft drinks or sports beverages
- Citrus fruits which are highly acidic, like grapefruit or lemons
- Crackers or refined carbohydrates
Dental care for kids
Start good oral habits early and reduce your child's risk of developing cavities by teaching your children to brush twice a day with fluoride toothpaste and how to properly floss. Limit or avoid some foods, have healthy snacks, and visit the dentist every six months for a dental checkup and fluoride treatments. At Byers Station Dental, we want your children to have healthy mouths. We take pride in making our patients our number one priority. If you are looking for a family dentist in Chester Springs, PA, contact our office and set up an appointment for a comprehensive dental exam and cleaning with one of our dental experts today.