A big part of keeping your child’s smile healthy is making sure they eat healthy food. This can sometimes be challenging when it comes to school and having to pack them lunches every day. While some foods to avoid might be obvious — like gummies and soda — some nutritious foods are actually hard on your child’s teeth.
What are some foods should you avoid?
- Raisins: They may be a healthier snack option, but raisins can adhere to teeth and produce plaque acids that continue to harm teeth long after you stop eating them.
- Oranges: Fruit is a nutritious addition to any lunch, but oranges and other acidic fruits can harm the tooth enamel in the long run due to their acidity.
- White Bread: When it comes to sandwiches, it’s best to avoid white bread. As bread is chewed, saliva breaks down the starches into sugar. The bread then sticks to the crevices of teeth, which can cause cavities.
- Popcorn: Popcorn might seem like a better alternative to potato chips, but it can still get stuck in between crevices and harbor harmful bacteria.
- Sports Drinks: Though they are marketed as healthy, sports drinks still contain lots of sugar.
What are some better alternatives?
- Apples: Instead of highly acidic fruits like oranges, reach for apples. Fruits that are high in fiber help to keep your child’s gums clean by producing saliva that washes away any harmful acids or food particles in their mouth.
- Whole-Wheat Bread: While white bread isn’t the best for your child’s teeth, less-refined varieties like whole wheat are a better option. It contains less added sugars and doesn’t break down easily.
- Dark Chocolate: The ADA states that chocolate washes off the teeth more quickly than other candies. In addition to this, dark chocolate contains less sugar than milk chocolate, making it a better choice for a sweet treat.
- Dairy: The calcium and phosphates in milk, cheese, and other dairy products help put back minerals your teeth might have lost due to other foods. They also help rebuild tooth enamel.
- Water: Instead of sugary drinks, water is the most tooth-friendly beverage for your child.
Remember to keep these tips in mind the next time you pack your child’s lunch — and don’t forget to schedule your child’s school dental entrance checkup with us today!