As a parent, you’re responsible for making sure your children are healthy. Unfortunately, sometimes in an effort to feed them healthy foods, you may unknowingly be doing damage to their healthy smile. While packing lunches and making snacks, keep in mind these healthy foods that can be bad for your kids’ teeth!
Citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruits, are tasty as both fruits and juices, and are packed with vitamin C. Typically these fruits make for a great quick, healthy snack, but their acid content can damage enamel and make teeth more vulnerable to decay. It is recommended to eat and drink them in moderation at mealtime, and rinse well with water afterward.
Just like citrus, dried fruits seem like a healthy alternative but can be harmful to your children’s smile. Many dried fruits you find on the shelves contain refined sugars and hydrogenated oils to increase their shelf life. They also tend to get stuck in between teeth, leaving behind sugar and potential cavities. If your children like to eat dried fruits, make sure they rinse their mouth with water, and then brush and floss after.
Be careful of the granola bars and mixes you find in the store. These processed and packaged foods are often packed with sugars, sugar substitutes, and even butter. These ingredients can be detrimental to the health of your children’s teeth if consumed too often and teeth are not well-maintained.
While crackers may seem like a healthy alternative to cookies or chips, these starchy snacks can be harmful to teeth. When starches break down, they turn to a sugary paste that clings to the teeth until brushed away. If left on the teeth, this residue invites bacteria and eventual tooth decay.
A great source of calcium and a healthy probiotic, yogurt is a great sweet treat for your child. However, yogurts geared toward children typically contain artificial dyes and a lot of sugar. Make sure to closely check ingredients before buying this dairy item for your children.
If you have any questions about how to supply your children with snacks that are healthy for their body AND their teeth, just ask Dr. David Moore - your local Charlotte pediatric dentist.