They say good health starts at home, and that is certainly true when it comes to your kids having healthy teeth. Developing a good oral health routine for your child is essential when ensuring healthy smiles for the future.

A child’s baby teeth play many significant roles in their life, especially in the development of adult teeth. Their role in the development is they help maintain the permanent spacing for their adult teeth as well as allow your child to eat and speak properly. Baby teeth are very important for the proper breakdown of food and digestion as well as responsible for the development of facial features.

Whether your child still has its baby teeth or not, you as a parent should be doing everything possible to ensure that those pearly whites stay as strong and healthy as possible. Of course, this includes brushing and flossing; but additionally, there are other ways you can help your child strengthen their teeth and gums, and prevent tooth decay. At Tree City Family Dental, we are here to help you understand the best methods you can take for strengthening your kids’ teeth.

Start Them Early

It’s very important that as a parent you implement an everyday oral health care routine for your child. This is essential in creating good oral hygiene habits because it lays down a foundation for how you children will take care of their teeth as adults.

Developing a healthy teeth cleaning routine for your child also helps them understand the importance of oral health. This is why we are here to outline a simple routine for your child to follow to help them strengthen their teeth year-round.

Brush Twice, Floss Once

Brushing twice daily helps prevent harmful, decay-causing bacteria from building up on tooth surfaces. On the other hand, something that is often forgotten about is flossing. Flossing once a day will help prevent any tooth decay by getting rid of debris in those hard-to-reach spaces between the teeth and gums.

When keeping your child’s dental health in check, you will want to focus on our approach of brushing twice and flossing once. This approach is all about establishing a routine to prevent cavities and gum disease. 

How to Strengthen Tooth Enamel

As you age, you may begin to lose important nutrients and minerals in your teeth, which can erode enamel. Once tooth enamel is gone, it can not grow back, and we call this process demineralization.

Strengthening your tooth enamel is all about brushing your teeth efficiently and effectively. The most important part of brushing is doing it gently by focusing on both the upper and lower parts of all your teeth. Brushing slowly will help ensure you are not missing any teeth and will allow you to hit hard-to-reach areas around the gum line that are targets for plaque and food debris. 

Foods For Healthy Teeth and Gums

As parents, we know our young ones can’t resist sugar and sweets. It seems that when your child tries chocolate for the first time every other type of food is less interesting. Many parents understand they need to limit the intake of sugary foods in their child’s diet. However, instead of eliminating all sugar and sweets, inform your child about healthy food types that help strengthen healthy teeth and gums.

Eliminating unhealthy foods is not what we are trying to do for your child. We are rather educating you on the benefits of eating healthy nutrient-dense foods that will give your child’s teeth a shine and sparkle unlike any other.

Benefits of Fruit

There are several different types of bacteria in your child’s mouth, and some of them can cause gingivitis, which is the first stage of gum disease. Consuming “whole” and nutritious foods are one way to prevent this from occurring. 

Some of the best foods that help prevent the occurrence of gum disease are fruits. Fruits are great because they provide certain nutrients such as Vitamin C and Vitamin D. These types of micronutrients promote healthy gums by supplying collagen and killing food particles in the mouth. They also provide Calcium which strengthens the hard outer shell of the teeth called enamel.

One thing to keep in mind is that fruits have lots of sugar as well as Citric Acid. While regular fruits can be good for our teeth, fruit juice is contrastingly very bad for our oral health. This is not only because of the high amount of acidity, but also the high sugar content. Even though fruit juices may provide a few benefits such as Calcium, Potassium, and Sodium, they are notoriously high in sugar which can be very harmful to the gums and teeth.

Sugar is not the only issue that concerns dentists. The Citric Acid in fruit can temporarily weaken tooth enamel and leave teeth vulnerable to erosion caused by brushing. That is why it is encouraged when your child consumes food with high acidity that they rinse out their mouth after with water for 30 seconds to clean and remove the lingering Citric Acid.

Benefits of Vegetables

We all know that vegetables can provide a variety of health benefits. It’s very important as a parent that you educate your kids on the importance of vegetables and how it impacts their overall health, whether it be for their teeth or even their immune system.

Kids eat very similar foods every day. We all know kids can be very picky and eat foods that are more processed and unhealthy like mac and cheese, sloppy joes, or mini cheeseburgers. These types of processed foods can be very detrimental to your child’s mouth putting them at risk of getting cavities or gum disease.  

Raw carrots, celery, cucumbers, snap peas, green beans, and leafy greens are “chewing foods” that mechanically clean your child’s teeth and gums. These foods naturally scrape away plaque that builds up between meals that your kids often miss when they brush. However, it’s also important for parents to encourage them to eat slowly and completely chew each crunchy mouthful since this will help strengthen enamel. This will allow your child to show the world their pearly white teeth for years to come! 

Benefits of Healthy Natural Fats

Nuts and seeds are healthy snacks that are great for your kid’s teeth. Peanuts and pumpkin seeds provide Calcium and Vitamin D which help stimulate saliva production. The production of saliva is very important for our mouth not only since it helps neutralize harmful acid but it increases the number of natural antibodies in the mouth as well as prevents bad breath.

Other great sources of natural fats consist of fatty fish, canned fish, and olive oil. They are great sources of omega-3 and Vitamin D which can help our teeth in a variety of ways. For instance, Vitamin D is one of the best vitamins for strengthening teeth. This is primarily because it plays a role in helping your body absorb Calcium. But, it also helps to improve your bone mineral density.

Preventing Tooth Decay for your Child

One way to prevent tooth decay for your child is to keep your mouth hydrated. If your child has a dry mouth, then they are more susceptible to demineralization and tooth decay. Which is one of the reasons dentists encourage people to chew gum. However, keep in mind you are going to want to have your child chew sugarless gum. Chewing sugar-free gum can help increase saliva flow, reduce plaque acid, strengthen teeth, and reduce tooth decay. All these factors will help keep your child’s teeth sparkling and gums hydrated.

Partner With a Child-Friendly Dentist

Now that you are well versed in the importance of strengthening your child’s teeth and gums it’s time to provide them with the care they need to succeed. At Tree City Family Dental we strive on helping you as well as your kids achieve and maintain a bright smile for a lifetime. To learn more about our dental services, we welcome you to contact us today.