Beyond regular brushing, flossing and visits to the dentist, nutrition plays a big part in keeping teeth healthy. For parents asking about the best types of food to give their children, here are a few suggestions and tips from Corona kids’ dentists.
Avoid giving your child snacks that are loaded with carbohydrates. Instead, give him fruits and veggies, especially those with a high water content like pears, melons and cucumbers. Give fruits like bananas and raisins sparingly as these have a high amount of sugar.
Some types of cheeses like Swiss, cheddar and Monterey Jack facilitate the production of saliva which helps keep food particles away from teeth.
Whenever possible, avoid giving your young ones foods that are sticky and chewy. A few examples of these are oatmeal, peanut butter, jelly beans and syrup. These food have a tendency to stick to teeth. If you wish to serve these to your children, make sure that they brush their teeth afterwards.
Sweets are best served after eating a main meal. Usually, the mouth increases its production of saliva after a meal and serving sweets after consuming a meal will allow the saliva to wash away food particles.
As much as possible, limit your children’s snack times to once or twice a day. This will give ample time for the saliva to wash away food particles and prevent bacteria in the mouth from having access to food.
For younger children who still bottle feed, it is a good idea to avoid letting them sleep with a bottle.
Make it a habit to give your child water instead of colored beverages like sodas, juices or milk which contain sugar. Apart from being sugar-free, water can wash away food particles.
Make sure to feed your children regularly with food that is rich in calcium, which helps build stronger teeth. These include milk, yogurt and broccoli.
Brush your child’s teeth after each meal or at least twice a day. If this is not possible because you are outside or if you are traveling, make sure that your child rinses his mouth. Flossing should be done at least once a day. Choose a toothpaste that has fluoride which helps prevent tooth decay.
If your child is taking medication like cough syrups, make sure that he brushes his teeth after taking it. Some medications have a high amount of sugar.
Once your child reaches the age of one or six months after his first tooth has erupted, take him to specialists like those at All Smiles Orthodontics and Children’s Dentistry.