The Top 3 Reasons Why Kids Get Cavities

Following these simple tips can result in your children being happy and healthy for years to come.

Let’s start by discussing the process behind cavities. First, tiny pieces of harmful foods get caught in the teeth and gums. Next, if the person does not have a sufficient oral care routine, they turn into harmful plaque. Lastly, that plaque starts to attack the tooth, getting inside of it and causing decay. The two questions to ask when thinking about your children’s oral health are:

  • Which foods are harmful?
  • What does an insufficient oral care routine look like?

In the following sections we will discuss the answers to these questions.

mother looking at childs teeth


The first factor that causes cavities is sugar, and unfortunately, it is everywhere in the modern world. You probably already know that you should limit your child’s consumption of candy and soda. What you might not understand is that foods and drinks like fruit, sports drinks, juice, and milk are high in this harmful substance as well. Other foods, like spaghetti sauce, ketchup, and granola bars, sneak up on even the most informed parents.

While you don’t need to be obsessive about cutting every gram of sugar out of your child’s diet, making an effort to reduce the most problematic food and drinks is a smart idea. First, start with drinks and obvious foods like candy and sugary cereal. Next, begin to cut out ones that fly under the radar. You should have a healthy, low sugar diet by the end of this process.


The second dietary issue that you need to know about is acids. One factor that makes this problem difficult to avoid is that it is not as easy to find as sugar, given that there is no acidity rating on standard nutrition labels. Fortunately, you can learn about the most problematic of these foods and cut them out with excellent results. They include frozen dinners, pastries, artificial sweeteners, cereals, and sodas. One thing that bodes well for you is that almost all of these examples are sugary too, so you can often solve both issues with one dietary decision.

Poor Oral Care Routine

The last crucial piece of cavity avoidance is a committed oral care routine. While technique plays a role, the more common issue is a lack of commitment. Children frequently skip brushing and flossing without their parents knowing. As a result, sugars, acids, and other pieces of food stick to their teeth and are free to develop into more harmful substances. Taking care of oral health every morning and night does an excellent job of halting this process before it leads to cavities.

One thing to note is that a child getting a cavity is not the end of the world. A skilled pediatric dentist can generally help you resolve this issue, without any significant long-term effects. That being said, your kids having healthy mouths is the best outcome of all. We hope that by limiting sugars, cutting down on acids, and having an excellent oral care routine results in your children being happy and healthy for years to come.

Updated: March 20, 2020

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