5 Best and Worst Food for Your Child’s Teeth
Helping children establish healthy oral hygiene at a young age can be challenging. The best way is to introduce simple dental care practices early on in your child’s life, (such as making their first dentist visit fun).
As you help your children see the importance of dental care, healthy habits will form and it will be easier for your child to maintain oral health as they grow up and mature.
One of the best ways to take care of your young children’s teeth at an early age is to feed them dental-friendly foods.
On the other hand, one of the best ways to harm your children’s teeth is to feed them foods that are harmful to their teeth.
- How to find the best and worst food for your Child’s Teeth
- 1a. Good For Teeth: Water
- 1b. Bad For Teeth: Sports Drinks
- 2a. Good For Teeth: Oranges
- 2b. Bad For Teeth: Gummy Foods
- 3a. Good For Teeth: Sugarless Chewing Gum
- 3b. Bad For Teeth: Lollipops and Hard Candies
- 4a. Good For Teeth: Cheese
- 4b. Bad for Teeth: Chips and Crackers
- 5a. Good For Teeth: Seeds
- 5b. Bad For Teeth: Caramel and Taffy
How to find the best and worst food for your Child’s Teeth
There are a lot of different foods out there, and it can be overwhelming to keep track what is harming and helping your child’s health.
Hopefully by the end of this post, you’ll be able to distinguish healthy oral foods from bad ones.
Below are five of the best and worst food for your Child’s teeth:
1a. Good For Teeth: Water
I know this seems very obvious, but I can’t stress enough how important water is for your child’s mouth.
Water is the main ingredient in saliva. Children need to always have a healthy supply of saliva to maintain healthy gums.
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1b. Bad For Teeth: Sports Drinks
You probably know already that soda pop is bad for teeth. But did you know that sports drinks are also harmful to teeth?
Sports drinks are full of sugar. Be aware that some vitamin-enhanced water can contain as much sugar as a candy bar.
2a. Good For Teeth: Oranges
Citrus foods such as oranges are great for gums because they can kill mouth bacteria and prevent gingivitis.
Cut oranges into fun shapes to make snack time fun (I like making smiley faces with them). Oranges also help supply gums with collagen.
If your kids don’t like oranges, you can also try kiwi, strawberries, limes, cantaloupe, and papaya.
2b. Bad For Teeth: Gummy Foods
Beware of all gummy foods which easily lodge in between teeth. I’m not just talking about gummy bears.
Dried fruit may seem like a good snack, but some brands are dangerously gummy and processed.
Also, if you feed your children fruit snacks or gummy vitamins, be sure to brush their teeth afterwards.
3a. Good For Teeth: Sugarless Chewing Gum
Gum may seem sticky, but don’t let it fool you. Sugarless gum helps scrape food excess off teeth. Not to mention your kids will love chewing it.
Make sure to purchase gum with Xylitol, which is an ingredient that battles tooth decay.
3b. Bad For Teeth: Lollipops and Hard Candies
I’m just going to say this once: suckers suck. The problem is that lollipops last long, which means your mouth will be constantly exposed to sugar for a long period of time.
The less time sugar stays in your mouth the better. Don’t just avoid lollipops, but any kind of candy that you can suck on (Jolly Ranchers, LifeSavers, etc).
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4a. Good For Teeth: Cheese
For a fun snack, have your children tear off their own string cheese to make pictures. Add cheese, yogurt, and other milk products into a child’s diet to strengthen the bone structures in their teeth.
Milk products also raise the pH levels and lowers the acid levels in the mouth, which helps prevent tooth decay. Dairy can also repair damaged enamel.
4b. Bad for Teeth: Chips and Crackers
Carb-filled crackers and chips easily lodge between teeth. Starchy substances promote decay and can weaken the teeth. Substitute chips with whole-grain crackers for a healthier alternative.
5a. Good For Teeth: Seeds
When your children are old enough, add seeds to their diet. Sesame, sunflower, and pumpkin seeds contains healthy fats that coat the teeth to shield them against bacteria.
In addition, seeds are another great source that strengthens enamel.
5b. Bad For Teeth: Caramel and Taffy
There’s no question that caramel, will get stuck in your teeth. Caramel and taffy will coat your teeth with sugar, which wears away the enamel in your teeth.
Make sure your kids stay away from hard caramel, caramel apples, saltwater taffy, and caramel sauce.
Hopefully the above mentioned best and worst foods for your child’s teeth would have given you some idea to choose the foods will help you have a healthier snack-time with your kids.
Cutting out sugary chewy food can be hard for kids. But in the end, they’ll thank you for helping them avoid cavities and root canals.
Remember that eating healthy food is not enough. Make sure to help your children develop other dental care practices so they can maintain a healthy and bright smile.
And don’t forget to ask your local family dentist about other hygiene practices to protect your kids’ teeth.
Aerin Ogden works on behalf of Modern Dental, a dental care office located in Las Vegas, Nevada. She loves kids, Pinterest, Tabata workouts, and her cute dog named Scout.