Support their teeth through the foods they eat!
In our last post, we explored the oral microbiome and found that one of the best ways to support oral health is by eating a healthy diet. Create healthy food habits and promote oral health for your child through the snacks they eat!
Anthem Pediatric Dentistry in Henderson provides comprehensive pediatric dental services from basic dental cleanings to orthodontics. Learn more about teeth-healthy snacks for kids in today’s post.
Oral Care Begins With Food!
There are many healthy habits beyond brushing and flossing that set your kids up with a healthy smile, and the food they eat is a great place to start.
Why is food important to kids’ oral health?
The foods we eat directly impact our oral health — there are those foods that cause our oral environment to become too acidic and cause gum concerns and cavities, while other food can help keep the bacteria balanced for a more alkaline (non-acidic) climate that teeth love.
Foods that can disrupt bacterial balance and cause dental issues over time include:
- Processed foods
- Starchy foods
Balance is always the key, and we understand that kids will be kids and you can’t always control the foods they eat. It is important to help them make better choices and start a conversation about caring for their teeth while helping them eat healthier at home.
Teeth-Healthy Snacks You Can Make Today!
The snacks you’ll find here take very little preparation and are great for your kid’s teeth and overall health!
Fresh Veggies and Dip
With fresh veggies and dip, not only can you explore fun new veggies to try and expand their taste buds, but the possibilities are endless.
Why fresh veggies? Fresh veggies are excellent teeth-healthy food and they’re great for us. Hard veggies such as carrots and radishes help scrub teeth and act as a natural toothbrush breaking up plaque, harmful bacteria, and other debris. Other great veggies include peppers, snap peas, and cucumbers.
Some great dips for veggies include:
- Hummus (available in a wide variety of flavors)
The veggie dips listed are all high in fiber, making them a teeth-healthy option because fiber promotes salivation, and good saliva flow combats cavities because it rinses harmful bacteria away and carries important ionic minerals such as calcium and phosphorus that can help remineralize teeth exposed to something acidic.
Although apples aren’t a veggie, they are a fresh fruit that is equally as good for the teeth because of its hardness, much like carrots and radishes. Apples taste great with peanut butter or even sliced cheese.
Kid-Friendly Charcuterie Board
A charcuterie board is just a fancy word for a meat and cheese board, and they’re a great option for kids — think of it as a homemade Lunchables! Slice up cheese, their favorite meats, vegetables, crackers, olives, and even a few fun treats such as chocolate chips.
Cheese, and all dairy products, are great for teeth. Cheese is high in calcium and contains a protein called casein that helps repair tooth enamel, and kids love eating cheese!
While it may be more difficult to win your kid’s snack time over with kale, bear with us! Leafy greens are not only great for their fiber, but they’re also high in calcium (for lactose intolerant kiddos) which, we know, is great for the teeth. Add dark leafy greens to a smoothie (we promise neither you nor your kid will detect them) or try a lettuce wrap with chard or collard greens the next time you make a sandwich — they may really love it!
At the end of the day, it’s experimenting with healthy foods and finding the ones that work, so don’t give up if they’re not a brussels sprouts fan at first! Kids love smoothies and you can’t go wrong with cheese. Instead of completely changing up snack time, try introducing fresh veggies into each one — divide and conquer by keeping what is familiar with a couple things that are great for their teeth.
For Healthy Teeth, Partner With Anthem Pediatric Dentistry in Henderson
It’s important to help your child create lasting oral health habits both at home with a healthy diet and lifestyle and through brushing and flossing, and in our pediatric dentist’s office with routine teeth cleanings. Schedule a teeth cleaning today!