Dietary Changes To Promote Good Pediatric Oral Health

Dentist Blog

As a parent, keeping your kids' teeth healthy can seem like a full-time job. Even if they are brushing and flossing regularly, they may still develop dental cavities.

Nevertheless, there are additional dietary measures that you can take to help promote good pediatric oral health. Here are a few of those measures.

Swap Sodas With Water

Many children enjoy the sweet fizziness of a cold soda. But sodas can damage your child's teeth. Even if they drink sugar-free sodas, they may still incur tooth decay from the soft drinks' high acid content. Additionally, sodas that contain sugar are even more damaging.

Oral microbes feed on the sugars and release enamel-dissolving acids. As the acids eat away at the tooth material, your child may develop cavities. Instead of sodas, offer your child water.

Water not only quenches your child's thirst, it also helps dilute oral acids, rinses away particles of food, and prevents dental stains. Water has a neutral pH and can make oral acids less corrosive as it dilutes them. Additionally, having your child swish water around their mouth can dislodge leftover bits of food that have become trapped between the teeth and along the gumline. The water also helps minimize dental staining. As the clear liquid is swished about the mouth, it dilutes leftover colorants from deeply dyed foods and beverages.

Swap Candy With Sugarless Gum

Like the sugars in sweet sodas, the sugars in candy feed oral bacteria. To satisfy your child's sweet tooth without promoting tooth decay, exchange the candy for sugarless gum.

Sugarless gum offers multiple oral health benefits, such as cleaning the teeth, and in some cases, discouraging bacterial growth. The stickiness of the gum pulls debris and plaque from the dental surfaces. Additionally, some ingredients in sugarless gum, such as xylitol, are antimicrobial.

For the greatest positive impact, consider having your child chew the gum immediately after snacks and meals.

Swap Chips With Crunchy Fruits and Vegetables

Enzymes in the mouth convert starchy foods, such as potato chips, into simple carbohydrates. Thus, starchy snacks also feed harmful oral microbes.

If your child enjoys eating potato chips, consider exchanging the chips for crunchy fruits and vegetables, such as apple slices or baby carrots. Additionally, even though there are natural sugars in fresh fruits and vegetables, there are typically more sugars present in chips.

To learn more ways to keep your child's teeth healthy, schedule a consultation with a pediatric dentist in your local area.


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