Unhealthy eating habits often lead to dental concerns such as cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. At our office in Pleasanton, California, the dentist will not only examine their teeth and perform the required dental treatments and procedures, but also educate you and your child on maintaining a healthy diet to maintain oral health.
What to Eat?
Raw Fruits and Vegetables
Raw fruits and vegetables stimulate the gums and clean your child’s teeth by removing bacteria accumulations. These foods also promote the production of saliva that washes away food particles and keeps your child’s mouth clean.
Fruits and vegetables also have a high water content, keeping your child hydrated and preventing issues like bad breath which are caused by a dry mouth. You can include apples, celery, cucumbers, melons, pears, and leafy vegetables like kale and spinach in your child’s diet to promote their oral health. However, remember, a lot of fruits like apples, while healthy for a child to eat, do have a high sugar content. Too much of it without the proper oral hygiene is not the healthiest for one’s teeth.
Add calcium-rich foods like milk, low-fat cheese, yogurt, and broccoli to your child’s diet as they help strengthen enamel and keep cavity-causing bacteria away.
Your child’s diet should also include protein like lean meat, nuts, low-sugar peanut butter, and lentils if you want them to have a healthy mouth and gums.
Ensuring your child stays hydrated is equally essential. Drinking water containing the proper fluoride level helps strengthen the enamel when your child’s teeth are forming making them more acid resistant.
What Not to Eat?
Sweetened beverages are one of the main causes of tooth decay in children. Thus, make sure to limit their intake of juice, sodas, and other sugary drinks.
Snacks that are high in sugar, carbohydrates, and starches can also cause teeth to decay and are one of the main causes of cavities in children. Limit their intake of foods like cake, cookies, and candies and avoid frequent snacking.
You should also limit the amount of sticky or chewy foods your child eats. Gummies, candies, caramels, lollipops may taste good, but they leave behind residue that is difficult for saliva to wash away. If your child does not brush their teeth well after eating these foods, this may cause plaque and bacteria accumulations that will harm their teeth.