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From the Desk of Dr. Pink

Smart Nutrition for Children

Smart nutrition – an overview of healthy eating/drinking to avoid tooth decay

What your children eat affects not only their growth and development, but also their teeth. The normal American diet tends to be high in sugar and starches, plus we like larger portions. This isn't the best diet for oral health. It is important to teach children healthy eating at a young age so their teeth stay strong. Healthy teeth are important for a child's self-esteem, a nice smile, chewing food and speaking, among other things.

You can help your children by teaching them to avoid a few common activities that can lead to tooth decay. Activities such as frequent sipping of sugary drinks and grazing on foods with minimal value should be avoided. The reason being, children don't normally brush their teeth after these activities so the sugar will coat their teeth and can cause decay. Another way to help is to avoid foods that include a lot of sugar or starch; both provide a medium for bacteria and tooth decay.

Reduce your child's risk of tooth decay with these tips:

  • Consume sugary foods and drinks only with meals to minimize their intake
  • Limit snacks between meals when it isn't common to brush
  • Brush twice a day and floss once a day
  • Chew sugarless gum
  • Visit the dentist regularly

Teach your children at a young age to take care of their teeth and make healthy choices so they have their teeth for years to come.

  • Author: Michael J. Pink DDS
  • Last updated: 4/1/2021
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