Trick or Treat?
Halloween isn’t the only time of year when children are showered with sugary sweets. As we enter the holiday season, there will be snacks and sweets at every turn. Even as the New Year begins, your children will be bombarded on Valentine’s Day, Easter, birthday parties and beyond.
Your Scottsbluff NE dentist knows that your child faces a greater risk for tooth decay when her diet includes both naturally and artificially sweetened foods. Even sweet drinks like fruit juices and soft drinks can contribute to a growing problem.
You may have warned your children that sweets are bad for the teeth, but it’s also important to explain why. The bacteria living within our mouths begin producing toxic acids from the moment that sugar crosses our lips. This acid attack continues for at least 20 minutes with each bite. Sticky foods make the acid attacks even more harmful since they don’t rinse away easily.
As a parent, it’s you’ve got a big responsibility to limit these foods throughout the year, not just on Halloween. More importantly, you must encourage your child to brush thoroughly after having a snack. They should be using a pea-sized portion of fluoridated toothpaste, followed by daily flossing.
To reinforce your fight against sugar while addressing your child’s sweet tooth, try offering sugarless gum. Sugarless gums help to neutralize acids and wash away food particles after snacks. In fact, some sugarless gums contain the artificial sweetener xylitol which provides added protection against plaque acids.
Even with the best intentions, your child is bound to have a super-sweet snack every once in a while. Who doesn’t love an ice cream sundae or a slice of cake? Just be sure that these treats don’t become an all-day event, and remember to visit your Scottsbluff NE dentist regularly for checkups.
To schedule your child’s dental appointment, contact our office today.