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Monthly Archives: December 2018

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Pack the perfect healthy lunch for your kid’s dental health

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As a parent, you can help your child achieve a bright, healthy smile in many different ways. One way you can help is by packing or planning a lunch menu that improves their oral health. Here are some tips for a lunch to encourage your little one’s healthiest smile!

1. Avoid sugary drinks – Even drinks marketed as “healthy”

Allowing children to sip on sugary beverages over long periods of time increases their exposure to sugar and acid that can erode their enamel. Try to limit or remove sports drinks, sodas, and high-sugar juices from their diets to aid in their oral health. Sugary beverages are one of the leading sources of sugar for children, and some can even be disguised as “healthy drinks” like nutritional water, sports drinks, or juice. Be sure to read the nutritional labels on drinks to educate yourself and your little ones.

2. Pack water

Water helps rinse away damaging acids and food debris from teeth, and help keeps saliva flowing – which naturally keeps teeth clean. Water is the healthiest beverage for teeth, and we suggest packing it instead of any other drink in your child’s lunch. Also, don’t fall for nutritional waters. Most of these “enhanced” water products have an excessive amount of sugar, and aren’t great for teeth or overall health.

3. Proceed with caution when buying packaged snacks

Snacks marketed as “healthy” aren’t always the best for your teeth. Granola cereal, dried fruit and trail mix can seem like healthier options, but they’re often packed with extras that aren’t healthy at all. In fact, dried fruit sticks to teeth and fuels bad bacteria that causes cavities, and granola can be packed with extra sugar. If you’re buying granola or health cereal, stay away from those that have marshmallows, chocolate pieces, and even candy. Look for a higher fiber content and granola that contains more natural whole ingredients like nuts and rolled oats. If your child does munch on snacks that contain, be sure to have them brush their teeth afterward.

4. Add more whole fruits and veggies

When packing your child’s lunch, add in natural whole vegetables and fruits whenever you can. Instead of packing starchy snacks like crackers, try to add small pieces of celery or baby carrots with a healthy dip like hummus. Instead of packing an imitation fruit snacks as dessert, try packing fresh, fibrous fruit like strawberries, kiwi or apples. Fiber naturally cleans teeth by scrubbing away food particles leftover from a meal. By replacing sweets and starches with fibrous fruits and vegetables, you can help your child avoid unnecessary sugar, and help them keep their teeth clean while they’re away from home.

5. Substitute nuts for chips

Crackers, potato chips, and other starchy foods can get stuck in small areas of tooth surfaces. Without proper brushing, these foods provide sugar to bacteria that feed on it, which ultimately leads to tooth decay. Instead of chips, pack nuts which are full of fiber and healthy protein.

6. Dietary choices affect teeth

The food your child eats affects their teeth, and influences their overall oral health. You don’t need to eliminate any whole food groups from your child’s diet, but making some small healthy changes can have a positive impact. Regardless of what your child eats for lunch, the most important way to care for their teeth is through brushing, flossing, and regular visits to the dentist. Visit our office for more information about mouth-healthy diets, and how you and your family’s diet can impact the health and beauty of your smile.


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Healthy habits you should follow this new year

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The new year is almost here and with it, we often think of new beginnings. What a great time to add a new habit to your oral health routine! Here are a few things you can easily add to your routine that not only improve your oral health by decreasing your risk of tooth decay and gum disease, but also reduce the amount of inflammation in your body. When teeth are not properly cleaned and cared for, plaque left in and under your gums can cause your body to produce an inflammatory response. Which of these new habits will you add to your routine this month to help improve your oral health and reduce inflammation?

​1. Brushing

If you currently are brushing every morning, I suggest adding night time brushing into your routine. Night time brushing is the most important time to brush your teeth because when you are sleeping you have less saliva in your mouth to wash away the bacteria on your teeth that cause decay, gum disease, and halitosis.

Still using a manual toothbrush? You may consider using a power toothbrush. Power brushes give you many more strokes per minute, therefore, increasing the efficiency of plaque removal.

2. Cleaning between your teeth

If you are not currently using something to clean between your teeth, consider finding a tool you can incorporate into your daily routine.

There are more options than floss if you finding flossing difficult, make sure your hygienist knows so they can recommend other useful options for you such as a waterpik. Ask your hygienist to give some suggestions of what will work well for you.

3. Oral rinses

You may want to add a therapeutic mouth rinse. If you suffer from dry mouth or oral irritation from alcohol based mouthwashes, consider a brand of mouthwash that contains no alcohol. The effects of the mouthwash to keep your teeth clean is the same!

4. Tongue cleaning

This is a great addition to your daily routine that will decrease the amount of bacteria in your mouth and freshen your breath. Use a gentle tongue scraper or just use your toothbrush!


5. Regular dental hygiene visits

If you currently are not currently scheduled to visit a dental hygienist on a regular basis, I highly recommend booking yourself a new client exam and cleaning. Routine cleanings are different for everyone, some people need to be seen every 6 months to a year, while others need to be seen more often in order to treat or prevent disease. Your dentist can help you decide what will work best for you.

Start your healthy new habits for the new year by scheduling your next appointment!


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