Your Minneapolis dentist practice covers a range of services, from cavity fillings to cosmetic dentistry. But most of all, we want to encourage prevention over treatment. Regularly scheduled dental cleanings are essential for children and adults alike, and today we want to address a common culprit that contributes to cavities in children – sugar.
You may not even be aware of the sugar content your child is taking in. So, here are some tips to help you fight that sugar monster.
Limit your children’s sugar intake
This comes as no surprise. Less sugar is better for your children’s teeth. Did you know that a cup of juice has just as much sugar content as a soda? This chart comparing juice and soda content is thoroughly enlightening.
Add to that the fact that each time bacteria in your child’s mouth comes into contact with sugar and starch, it produces an acid that attacks the teeth, and you’ve got a recipe for cavities. Soda can be even worse for your children’s teeth, because carbonated beverages contain acids that can erode the enamel on a person’s teeth (this goes for you, too, parents) and can make a person more susceptible to tooth decay.
Try to put limits on how much sugar your child is allowed. Restrict candy and desserts, and if they are a regular juice or soda drinker, scale back how many drinks they are allowed (or try watering down juice to lessen sugar content).
If your child is still young enough they haven’t started consuming sugar yet, don’t encourage it. Set limits now.
Use hygiene to combat sugar’s risks
Make sure your children brush their teeth at least twice a day, and that at least one of these brushings takes place right before bed. (Note: No sugary snacks or drinks after they brush or you’ll just introduce new bacteria that will attack their teeth overnight).
It’s also important your children floss once a day. I know this tends to be a sticking point for kids, but work at it. Once something becomes routine, children adjust accordingly. You’re helping set their standards for their whole life, so make sure the bar starts out high.
And, of course, always schedule regular Minneapolis dental visits for checkups and cleanings. It’s crucial that you don’t lose sight of the condition of your children’s teeth, and that you give us every opportunity to address any buildup before cavities develop.
Supplement with Flouride
To further protect your children’s teeth, you might consider supplementing their dental hygiene with fluoride treatments. (Read more in our article, Flouride Treatments Benefit Children and Adults).
Flouride is a mineral that can be topically applied to the teeth to strengthen and protect the enamel, which helps prevent tooth decay. Gendler Dental Center offers flouride treatments for children and adults. This may be particularly helpful for adding to cavity prevention, but it should never replace proper dental hygiene.
If you limit sugar intake where you can, encourage and facilitate regular dental hygiene and supplement with fluoride (if necessary), you’ll be well on your way to ensuring your children have the healthiest teeth possible. That’s the best advice from a Minneapolis dentist we have to offer!