Ways to Protect Your Kids' Teeth This Christmas Holiday
Posted by SAN PEDRO PEDIATRIC MEDICAL GROUP on Dec 17 2022, 09:04 AM
The holiday season is a busy time for family get-togethers, shopping, work parties, school functions, and neighborhood events. In addition to making memories with your kids, the holidays are also a great time to teach them about moderation when it comes to sweets. Here are tips to help them avoid unnecessary sugar and starchy foods this holiday season.
- Start by teaching them to brush their teeth twice a day for two minutes each session. If kids understand the importance of brushing their teeth, they're less likely to want to consume foods that are bad for them.
- Instead of allowing your kids to eat cookies and other sweet treats throughout the day, put limits on their consumption. Only allow them a few treats per day, and try to focus on healthier snacks like nuts and cheese sticks.
- Make sure they're not eating high-sugar cereal for breakfast or drinking sugary juice throughout the day. Teach them to drink water instead to reduce sugar levels in their bodies.
- Most holiday meals will include a variety of starchy foods like potatoes, bread rolls, rice, pasta, and more. Encourage your child to fill up on healthy food first before going for the potato side dish or the roll with butter.
- You can also encourage them to eat veggies as a healthy alternative to starchy food, especially during the holidays when there will be so many delicious side dishes that are unhealthy. Consider making a salad or a plain bowl of vegetables for dinner to help balance out all the heavy starches.
- Finally, encourage your kids to avoid sticky candies and gummy candies that linger in their mouth for long periods of time. These present a major risk for tooth decay, especially for younger patients. It's best to avoid these types of sweets altogether to protect the health of your teeth.
- If your kid does eat candy or sugary foods during the holidays, make sure to brush their teeth afterward. However, the best way to prevent cavities is to avoid sticky candies altogether! Try to stick to treats that are low in sugar and have healthier ingredients like dark chocolate, nuts, seeds, or fruits instead. You can also consider gifting your child a small toy instead of candy as an added incentive to keep them cavity-free during holiday meals.
- Water is an ideal beverage for children because it prevents dehydration and also washes away food debris from the mouth without harming the teeth. Milk is also healthy but should only be consumed in moderation due to its high sugar content. If your child is craving something sweet to drink, try giving them 100% fruit juice diluted with water to prevent tooth decay.
Call San Pedro Pediatric Medical Group at (310) 832-6487 or schedule an online appointment to learn more about taking care of your child's oral health.