Lone Star Pediatric Dental & Braces – Taking Care of Teeth During Valentine’s Day
How to Take Care of Your Child’s Teeth During Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day is today, and while kids may still think romantic attraction is a prime source for cooties, many understand that V-Day is a major opportunity for another indulgence: candy! Those candy hearts and heart-shaped chocolates are all too enticing for most kids, and while there’s nothing wrong with enjoying them in moderation, Valentine’s Day candy can present a threat to the health of teeth when consumed in large quantities. So how can you protect your child’s teeth during Valentine’s Day festivities? Here are a few simple tips.
Limit Candy to February 14th
When it comes to dental health, getting sugar exposure out of the way all at once is much healthier than spreading everything out. This has to do with the chemistry of sugar in the mouth. When we eat sugary foods, naturally-occurring bacteria in the mouth break down these sugars into acids, which pool on the teeth and corrode enamel. This means that the amount of candy we eat in one sitting isn’t as important: what matters for the teeth is how frequently they’re exposed to sugar. Accordingly, the best option is often to let your child indulge on the day of Valentine’s Day, then get rid of the leftover candy at the end of the night. This limits sugar exposure to only one day, helping to prevent long-term exposure and decay.
Stay Away from Sticky Foods
If your child is wearing braces, it’s doubly important to watch out for what they eat. In particular, steer them clear of candies that are sticky, gooey, hard, or crunchy. These candies can get stuck in wires or break brackets off the teeth, presenting a danger to both their teeth and their orthodontic treatment. Instead, opt for soft candies that are easy to chew.
Brush & Floss
Of course, the best option for protecting dental health is through strong oral hygiene. Be sure to have your child brush and floss their teeth anytime after eating candy. Doing this wipes sugar away from the mouth and teeth, keeping the teeth healthy and protecting from dental decay.
Schedule a Dentist’s Appointment
Beyond prevention, another great option for protecting your child’s dental health is to schedule a checkup with a dentist after Valentine’s Day. If you’re looking for a great, convenient option, check out Lone Star Pediatric Dental & Braces – it’s a trustworthy practice for pediatric dentistry and orthodontics in Austin, and they have 10 locations spread conveniently throughout Austin, Killeen, Dripping Springs, and Kyle, TX. But no matter what you do, we hope that you and your child enjoy a happy, tooth-friendly Valentine’s Day!