When it comes to your child’s nutrition, what they eat directly affects his oral health. Nutrition also directly affects their growth and development, and their smile. While some foods damage a child’s delicate baby teeth, other foods can fortify children’s teeth. The following tips can help parents plan for healthy snacks and less cavities.
Before a child is even born, parents are learning the do’s and don’ts of parenting to keep their child safe, healthy and strong. After birth, there is even more education needed for both parents and child to keep that foundation of wellness intact.
One area not to neglect is your child’s relationship with nutrition. How your child fuels himself/herself will impact their mental, physical and social health for a lifetime. Nutrition and oral wellness go hand in hand as well. Take a moment to assess how nutrition is being taught in your home and the example you show your children every day. If you find yourself in need of some course corrections, start today with small goals and changes for better health for the whole family.
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers some great resources to help parents in this essential household goal for better nutrition.
The USDA website above offers menus, apps, printouts and more for parents and individuals looking to establish healthy habits.
MyPlate helps you establish a healthy eating style and incorporate it throughout your lifetime. What you eat (and drink) matters. The MyPlate program recommends that you:
In Teaching Kids the Art of Mindful Eating, Dawn Earnesty, Michigan University Dietetics student says this:
“Mindfulness can also be applied to the way we eat and have an effect on our relationship with food. Developing a good relationship with food at a young age is important and can help prevent childhood obesity and even obesity in adulthood with the continuation of this practice.”
Good nutrition is foundational for growth and learning. Healthy eating can help prevent obesity and weight-related diseases, like diabetes. Here are some suggestions to improve your child’s diet from the National Institutes of Health:
In addition to avoiding tooth-harming drinks and snacks, be sure to practice good oral hygiene at home and visit the dentist every six months for a cleaning and checkup.
Depending on your child’s health, at different stages they will have different nutrient requirements that support oral wellness and overall wellness. Some of them, such as the requirements for iron and calcium, vary with age, but are very important.
Many of our parents are surprised to learn just how connected oral health is to overall body health and wellness. Some health conditions directly affect the health of your child’s mouth. Sometimes it’s the illness that affects mouth health, and sometimes it’s a treatment.
Professional dental exams are a proactive way to prevent (and treat) cavities and tooth decay. They also help maintain tooth health and support a bright, white smile.
Learn more about our dental cleanings or schedule an appointment, by calling our Tampa office today at (813) 576-0200.