Posts for: April, 2016
Family dentistry means more than you might expect. When a family dentist takes your loved ones into their care, they're vowing to provide them the help they need to build healthy teeth and gums in the long-term, and gain the knowledge and tools that help them get there. You need different types of care at every age, and it's crucial to stay in touch with what's right for your mouth. By approaching your health alongside your children, you not only form a stronger bond with your family members, but keep everyone in healthy shape.
Keep reading to learn more about how you can help everyone in your home feel good about their dental care, and get in touch to schedule your family's next exams! Visiting the office together will help your kids feel less anxious about treatment, and give you more information about where your family's taking the right steps toward disease-free teeth.
Family Engagement with Oral Health
- Try some oral health activities - If your kids aren't interested in brushing their teeth, they might need to learn a little more about how cavities form, and how oral hygiene keeps them at bay. Try an experiment that will illustrate the effects of acids and bacteria on tooth enamel, and talk about how the results apply to real life.
- Clean your teeth together - Family brushing time is never a bad thing! You can keep an eye on your kids' habits, make sure they actually brush (and brush for long enough), and have some fun at the same time. Try finding a 2-minute song to time their brushing and make the practice more exciting.
- Shop smart - Your groceries should give your kids the tooth-friendly foods, snacks, and drinks that their growing bodies need. Try to limit sugary or starchy packaged foods, and prioritize fresh fruit and vegetables, dairy products, and nuts.
- Find tooth-healthy alternatives - This doesn't just mean swapping out certain items on your grocery list. Try approaching holidays that are usually candy-filled in a slightly different way - donate leftover Halloween candy in the few weeks after trick-or-treating, and use non-sugary things as rewards for good grades or behavior. Sugar doesn't have to control your kids' lives, and you'll be helping them get used to (and appreciate) the taste of healthier foods.
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You do everything possible to provide for your kids. But what about when there isn't an option that will work with both their desires and with their health? Kids can be persistent when they light upon something they want - especially if they’re denied it outright. When your kids are craving a sweet treat, what’s a parent to do? You know that soda is a bad idea, both for teeth and for overall health, but when alternatives like smoothies are just as sugary, it can feel like you’re backed into a corner.
Fortunately, not all sugary snacks are created equal. There are always options that will fulfill your children's cravings but still leave them with bright, healthy smiles. Here’s how to find out what you should be putting in your grocery list and what you should be leaving behind at the store. If you ever have questions about how to feed your family, just get in touch with our office to learn more about tooth- and body-healthy foods.
Tooth Friendly Snacks for Kids and Adults
Children aren't the only ones who crave unhealthy treats now and then. If you've been struggling to eat better in the office or at home planning ahead will help you avoid a sudden crash and grabbing fast food or other momentarily satisfying snacks.
In our time as dental professionals we've seen a lot of food and drink options and seen their ultimate results on oral health. Remember that sugar isn't the only enemy - foods and drinks high in acidity are just as bad (if not worse). This is why soda is a nemesis for healthy enamel: because it's both sweet and acidic. In addition to soft drinks, here are the top bad guys.
Smoothies - Although fruit is great for your body in whole form, when it's blended into a drink, it's typically sweeter and affects the body differently. Studies have shown that smoothies contain over 2.5 tsps of free sugars, which are dangerous for teeth.
Citrus fruit juice - Oranges, lemons, and limes are acidic and their juices have added sugars, making them a double threat to your enamel.
Dried fruit - While dried fruit might seem healthier than candy, it can have a sugar content that's just as high. Anything that sticks to your teeth is espeically harmful for your enamel, since it remains pressed against the teeth.
Potato chips - If you're snacking on chips during the day, it might be time to find a new appetite suppressant. The starches in chips give rise to harmful acids in the mouth, and also tend to get trapped against your teeth.
Anything too crunchy for teeth - If you have a habit of chewing on ice or other items not meant for teeth, you should try to keep that in check - this can lead to chips, cracks, or breaks.