Make healthy choices
Sugary or sticky foods coat the teeth and should only be consumed at mealtime. When your child is chewing, there is more saliva in the mouth. This helps to wash away the sugars. Favour healthy snacks, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, firm cheeses and nuts.
Cheese can contribute to good dental health. Indeed, it slows down the bacteria causing cavities.
On the other hand, raisins and other dry fruits can stick to the teeth and decay can develop. They should ideally not be served to your child as a snack.
Healthy eating habits for healthy teeth
We have all heard that sugar is bad for the teeth, but it is good to know why. When your child eats or drinks sugars, the bacteria in your child's mouth mix with the sugars to make a mild acid. This acid attacks the enamel, which can lead to dental decay.
Sugar-related damage depends on:
- The frequency at which it is consumed;
- The amount consumed;
- The length of time in which all the sugars mix to the bacteria in the mouth.
Natural sugars can have the same effect on teeth as white (or refined) sugar. Many healthy foods contain natural sugars, such as milk. If you put your child to bed with a bottle of milk, the milk stays in the mouth for a long time and it may cause cavities.
Unsweetened fruit juice may have no added sugar, but fruit juice has natural sugars in it. If your child is always sipping juice between meals, the teeth are being coated in sugar over and over again. Water is the best choice of drink to have between meals.