The habits that you establish early on are likely to stick with them as they grow into adults, and create better dental health for a lifetime.
You have no doubt heard the phrase “You are what you eat,” and that is true for everything from your vision down to your teeth. To develop strong and healthy teeth, it is important for children to get the nutrients they need. It is also important that they limit eating things that promote tooth decay and can lead to dental cavities. According to pediatric dentists, five essential nutrients are needed for kids to have a beautiful, healthy smile for the future.
- Fruits and vegetables – Try to choose fruits that have a low concentration of sugar, like melons and pears, and limit those that have a lot of acids. Also, pick things like apples that require children to chew. Limit their intake of dried fruits and bananas because they contain a high concentration of sugar. If your child does eat them, get them to brush their teeth immediately afterward.
- Calcium – Calcium is very important for building healthy and strong teeth. Encourage milk, cheese, broccoli, and yogurt as snacks to get your child all they need daily.
- Cheese – Cheese triggers the production of saliva. So when you combine it with snacks and meals, it helps to keep teeth rinsed and particle-free.
- Limit sugar, sticky and starchy foods – Foods that are sticky and sugary end up adhering to the teeth and can cause chaos. Sugar is one of the biggest contributors to tooth decay. If your child does have foods that are sticky, sweet or contain a lot of starch, make sure to have them brush it away quickly.
- Bedtime bottles – If you are going to give your baby a bottle at bedtime or before you lay them down for a nap, try to use plain water instead of filling it with juice, formula, or even milk. That will prevent sugar from resting on the teeth while they sleep, which can lead to tooth decay.
Other Important Dental Habits
It isn’t just what they eat that is important. Good dental health is also about their habits and care. The habits that you establish early on are likely to stick with them as they grow into adults, and create better dental health for them for a lifetime. Make sure to help them brush their teeth and floss every day. The minute that they have two teeth next to each other, flossing is a good idea. And brushing their teeth when they get up and before bed is imperative for good oral hygiene and good dental checkups.
Also, try to get them to the dentist early. The less intimidating you can make it, the better. Introduce them to dental exams in stages so that they aren’t overwhelmed. It is important that you get their check-ups done every six months, and consider using sealants to prevent those teeth that do the most chewing from developing caries and tooth decay.
It is never too early to work on your child’s dental health. When you combine getting them to eat the right things and to develop good oral hygiene, establishing good habits early on means there is a good chance they will have excellent oral health forever.
St. Louis Pediatric Dentist
Positivity is Key!!! At a child’s first dental visit, parents play a vital role in making the visit a positive experience by “setting the stage.” Any fear or anxiety presented by the parents will be “picked up” by the child.
Your child’s initial oral examination will include a visual examination, charting, diagnosis and treatment recommendations. At The Dental Anesthesia Center, we work hard to make your child feel at ease by providing exceptional patient care in a relaxed, convenient atmosphere. Depending on your child’s circumstances, we will discuss if sedation or anesthesia is right for your child.
Call us today to schedule your appointment at (314) 862-7844. We look forward to meeting you!