Many holidays are celebrated throughout the year in part by indulging in rich foods in excessive quantities and Valentine’s Day is no exception to this rule.
Parents might be looking forward to a delicious dinner with a nice bottle of wine but your kids are more likely to be excited about the many chocolate bars, candy hearts and sour candies they are going to get from their classmates, teachers, grandmas and grandpas. Whether it is the novelty of having access to sweet things in quantity or the fact that the sugary treats come as a kind gesture from friends and family, kids often go bonkers over the candy overload associated with holidays.
So, for this upcoming holiday we rounded up some tips on how to communicate why oral health is so important and how what your children eat can make a big impact on their teeth even if they aren’t permanent.
Compare dental cavities to bruised fruit and veggies
Here’s how: Find a less than fresh or dinged up apple, banana, potato or cucumber. Depending on your kids and their ick tolerance, you guys might have some fun with this. Show them the bruised, and how you still have a good apple, banana or veggie once the bruise is scooped away or cut off.
Cavities are kind of like that. You can explain that we could have avoided the bruising if the fruit or veggie was carefully handled. In the same way, when you’re not careful with your teeth, your teeth develop cavities that are like fruit or vegetable bruising that your dentist has to remove.
What a waste of good teeth enamel! So always brush and floss to avoid cavities.
Go for teeth-friendly Valentine’s Day treats
Instead of forbidding candy and tempting rebellion, make your kids happy with melt-in-your-mouth cakes, cookies and brownies. They can give away cupcakes, too. Melt-in-your-mouth: that’s the keyword. Avoid chewy, sticky, gummy treats that take a longer time to eat and get stuck on and between teeth. Or, consider sugar free candies or better yet, candies that use xylitol as the sweetener. Xylitol actually makes our teeth stronger and helps prevent cavities.
Swish and brush
Don’t forget to swish with water to rinse the mouth after eating sweets. And then brush at least twice a day to prevent cavities. It can be possible to enjoy Valentine’s Day without neglecting your teeth and even use it as a learning opportunity for our kids to better understand how our teeth work, how to protect them and what a dentist does when something is wrong with our teeth.
We wish all of our patient families love, peace and health this Valentine’s day.
About Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan
Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontic Specialists of Michigan has specialized in pediatric dentistry and orthodontics since 1968. Our family-friendly and newly renovated office gives patients and families a more comfortable and consistent experience with dentistry from the very beginning. Our pediatric dentists treat children from newborn to 18 years of age while our orthodontists provide care for both children and adults and are proud to be Premier Providers of Invisalign and Invisalign Teen services. We have the ability to treat all patients with compassion and individuality, including those that may have special needs as we have treatment rooms available for children who require additional privacy and customized care options. We pioneered valued hospital affiliations to allow dental services to be performed at DMC Children’s Hospital and St. John Macomb Hospital, when appropriate or necessary, and our specialists are also proud to be on staff at Henry Ford and Beaumont hospitals.