Let’s face it. Christmas is just around the corner, and nearly all parents will be giving their children some (if not quite a bit of) candy in their Christmas stockings. Children may also enjoy other holiday favorites, like festive sugar cookies and candy canes. While people of all ages — and especially children — should enjoy Christmas and holiday-themed treats in moderation, knowing what foods and drinks are not best for teeth the rest of the year is important. Here are a few things to watch out for to keep kids’ teeth healthy.
Dried Fruits And Fruit Juices
If it has fruit in it, it must be healthy — right? Family dentists warn against this line of thinking. Dried fruits often contain a lot of added sugar, and most fruit juices do, too. In fact, healthcare professionals warn that some fruit juices actually contain just as much — if not more — sugar than soda and other sugary, carbonated beverages. There are plenty of alternatives, however. Some fruit juices with 100% juice, for example, may contain lower concentrations of sugar. Water, on the other hand, is always the best option — and it helps flush out any remaining food particles and wash away stains.
Starchy Foods And Crackers
“Simple carbs quickly break down to sugars,” What To Expect magazine explains. In other words, white bread, pasta, and white rice quickly converts to sugar in kids’ mouths, which can ultimately lead to tooth decay. And all of these foods tend to be sticky, too, which means they linger in children’s mouths, causing even more harm. Most crackers pose the same problems. Feed kids — even babies and toddlers — whole grains whenever possible. (Teeth start developing just six weeks after conception, and baby teeth ultimately affect dental and oral health, too!) After eating any grains, kids should always brush with a toothbrush. Toothbrushes should be swapped out every three months or whenever kids’ are sick for the most efficient brushing.
Cosmetic dentistry costs can be expensive, with the average patient paying between $5,000 to $6,000. Family dentists recommend keeping kids’ teeth healthy from a young age. Avoid snacks, foods, and drinks that will cause problems, like dried fruit, crackers, and white grains.