Back To School - Don't Forget That Healthy SmileThursday, August 6th, 2015, 12:37 am
The start of school is just a few weeks away and that means lunchtime away from home for your students. Keep their healthy smiles in mind when you pack that school lunch and you’ll help your child with better overall health as well!
All ages are at risk of developing cavities, especially if they don’t practice healthy dental habits but dental caries (tooth decay) is the most common childhood disease. Here are a few tips that can help you promote healthy dental habits in your family:
- Eat healthy at home. A healthy diet that avoids added sugars and simple carbohydrates will do more than help your children avoid tooth decay. A balanced diet with healthy whole grains, lean protein and lots of fruits and vegetables will also promote your child’s growth and physical health. Your children will imitate household eating habits when away from home – even though they may say they won’t!
- Make sure the lunchbox contains fruit and dairy. Naturally sweet fruits make a healthy snack that satisfies cravings and add needed nutrients. Low fat cheese is another good option that adds calcium to your child’s diet. That added calcium makes for strong bones and teeth. Cheese or other dairy products are a great way to end a meal — they actually help protect tooth enamel from decay.
- Say NO to sticky or sugary foods. Frequent sugar consumption is one of the worst things for your teeth and is a direct cause of tooth decay. Avoid packing lunchtime treats with added sugars, especially sticky stuff, like candy, cookies and sodas. These snacks may be convenient but they are better food sources for the bacteria that cause tooth decay than for your kids. Remember to check the sugar content on packaged items, there can be lots of sugar bombs hiding in healthy sounding items like apple sauce!
- Participate in oral hygiene care. Be a part of the morning and nightly ritual of brushing and flossing. Teaching your kids good oral health habits when they are young will result in a lifetime of better oral health. Let your children watch you brush and floss so they can imitate you. Morning tooth brushing should be after breakfast so they go to school with clean teeth and fresh breath.
Healthy habits, like eating well and good hygiene habits, begin at home so make these times fun. Sing a song while brushing teeth – this helps time the brushing so they don’t cut it short.
Now is a great time to arrange dental appointments for the entire family. Please contact Wilbanks Smile Center in Toccoa, GA today at 706-391-8777 to schedule your next visit.