How Does Sugar Affect Your Baby Teeth?
The Impact of Sugary Drinks
Sugary drinks are some of the worst things you can consume when it comes to maintaining dental hygiene. This includes soft drinks, fruit juices and even milk. Just stop and think for a moment about the amount of sugar in one can of soft drink. Cocoa Cola, for example, has 10.6g of sugar per 100 ml. This means the average can contains almost 40g of sugar – or 7 teaspoons. Can you imagine pouring a 375 ml coffee and tipping 7 teaspoons of sugar in?
These drinks cover your child’s teeth in sugar. The acids generated from this sugar start to slowly eat at tooth enamel and cause tooth decay. We’re not suggesting that all sugary drinks should be avoided altogether, as this isn’t practical, especially for kids. But enjoying them in moderation is important, as well as maintaining healthy habits like brushing twice daily.
The Danger of Hidden Sugars
Most people know how bad soft drinks are when it comes to sugar. But many other foods you purchase also include other hidden sugars. They are most prevalent in processed food, but the tricky thing is that they often have different names. If you read the ingredients label on your food, you can usually find the amount of ‘sugars’ listed. But you should also keep an eye out for names like fructose, dextrose or glucose. These are all sugars found in various types of processed food, so it’s important to be vigilant when choosing the foods your child consumes.
Tooth Decay and Its Consequences
Many people think tooth decay just requires a filling, and then it’s all fixed up. While fillings are certainly one remedy, prevention of tooth decay is even better. While tooth decay does lead to cavities, it also causes pain, difficulty eating and can even affect a child’s speech. Even the most careful people might need a filling or two throughout their life. But it’s best to avoid invasive dental surgery for children by maintaining good dental hygiene habits and catching issues early.
Creating a Sugar-Conscious Diet
Sugar is everywhere in the modern world, so it’s difficult to avoid. Even popular children’s food that should be healthy, often isn’t when you consider the amount of sugar and artificial sweeteners used. So, to combat the effects of sugar, moderation is the key. This makes sense anyway because unhealthy food is bad for children in many ways – not just their dental health.
Try to include more natural products such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to create a more balanced diet. Get your children into the habit of drinking water instead of fruit juices and soft drink. Most of all, ensure that children brush twice a day and develop good habits from a young age.
Importance of Oral Hygiene Practices
Avoiding sugar as much as possible is a great start. However, oral hygiene is about much more than just choosing healthy foods. Firstly, brushing twice each day is essential for good oral health. It helps to clear away food particles, sugars and acids that may damage your teeth. Flossing is another way to remove food from between your teeth.
Using fluoride toothpaste is another good option. There is a small amount of fluoride in most of Australia’s tap water, so this gives some added protection. But fluoride toothpaste is ideal for removing plaque, strengthening enamel and preventing tooth decay. Using all of these tips and scheduling regular dental visits for your child, you can ensure both baby and adult teeth grow strong and healthy.
Need Quality Dental Care in Maroubra?
Here at Dental Avenue in Maroubra, we provide a welcoming, warm environment where families can feel comfortable. Our dentists understand the importance of childhood dental care, and we’re great at making everybody feel at home. Book an appointment or contact us today to ensure your child’s teeth grow strong and healthy. We’d love to be the dentist in Maroubra who helps maintain your family’s oral health.