A child’s diet greatly contributes to their oral health, and whether they will develop cavities or experience early tooth loss due to dental caries (cavities). Instilling healthy eating habits early on will help ensure your child experiences an overall healthy well-being, as well as a healthy smile for life.
A proper diet for good oral health
Children are naturally drawn to eating foods containing sugar and carbohydrates, such as chips and crackers. Although these foods are quite tasty, they increase your child’s chance of developing cavities, when eaten in excess. There is certainly no problem with occasional indulgences, just be sure to limit your child’s intake of these preferred foods. Instead, encourage your child to eat a well-balanced diet containing fresh fruits and vegetables.
Don’t let your child drink their way to tooth decay
Sugary beverages are often the drink of choice for children. The problem is by allowing your child to sip on sugary drinks throughout the day means that your child’s teeth are constantly being coated in sugar, the main culprit for tooth decay. Many parents buy-in to the idea that fruit juice, or even sports drinks, are a healthier alternative to sodas but that simply is not the case. Even 100 percent pure fruit juices or hydrating sports drinks contain high amounts of sugar. Encouraging your child to drink plain water between meals will help reduce their risk of tooth decay.
Good oral health starts early
Even milk contains sugar, hence the recommendation for not allowing your baby to go to sleep with a sippy cup or bottle of milk, which results in “baby bottle tooth decay.” A child’s primary teeth are as important as their developing permanent teeth. Establishing good oral health habits now will help ensure proper development and growth. Plus, by setting up these habits early, your child can experience a life long journey of good oral health.
At Smiles by Songstad, we welcome patients of all ages. For questions regarding your child’s oral health care needs or to schedule an appointment, contact Smiles by Songstad today at (615) 200-1157. We welcome patients of Green Hills and Belle Meade, Tennessee.