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Feed Your Kid’s Teeth with Vitamins

June 15, 2017

As a parent you’re often worried about every aspect of your child’s life. From their diet and activity level to their overall and oral health. It may not come as a surprise that what you choose to feed your kids can have an impact on all of those things. If you want to keep your kid’s teeth healthy, one of the most important things you can do is feed them a healthy diet full of vitamins and minerals. By keeping their bodies healthy, you can help to keep their teeth strong too!

Healthy Diet Healthy Teeth

Because our teeth are a part of our bodies it makes sense that by eating a healthy diet we can keep them healthy along with the rest of our bodies. We all know that the calcium found in dairy products is great for our teeth and often tell our kids that by drinking their milk or eating yogurt they can have strong bones that will grow big and strong. The same can be said for many other food groups. Explaining our bodies as if they were a machine is a great way to get this point across to your children. Our bodies have many different systems that work to keep us healthy. We fuel our machines by eating food. Our stomachs break up this food and send the vitamins and minerals where they are most needed. When your child eats a cheese stick, their tummies get to work and break that cheese up into the vitamins, fats, and minerals that keep it together. It sends the calcium in the cheese straight to the teeth where the teeth can absorb it and keep them strong and healthy. Other foods are full of other vitamins and minerals that can keep different oral tissues healthy as well.

Foods and Vitamins that Fuel

Most parents are aware the good that fresh fruits, veggies, and dairy do for their children’s’ – and their own – bodies. What you might not know is that the healthy, balanced diet you feed your child also keeps their oral tissues healthy. Here are a few vitamins and the foods they’re found in that are famous for their tooth-loving properties.

Vitamin A – Vitamin A helps to make white blood cells that can help your child’s body fight off infections which can include canker sores, gum inflammation, and bitten tongues. Vitamin A is found in carrots, sweet potato, and spinach!

Vitamin C – Vitamin C helps your body build collagen which is an important ingredient in teeth. Vitamin C can be found in oranges, red peppers, broccoli, and strawberries.

Vitamin D – Vitamin D is extremely important for our teeth because it is the vitamin that allows our bodies to absorb the calcium and phosphorous that our teeth need to stay strong and healthy. Vitamin D can be found  in Almonds, spinach, avocado, squash, and is often fortified into milk and dairy products because of how helpful it is.

Feeding your child a diet full of vitamins and minerals is no-doubt important, but we all know that getting kids to eat vitamin-rich foods is difficult. Many food companies have done a great job at helping us “trick” our kids into eating healthy food, but it does come at a cost. Fruit juices and snacks are often laden with sugar to make them “more palatable” to the little ones, but this can cause serious problems for children’s teeth. A recent recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics highlights this issue. Based on mounting evidence of tooth decay and increasing rates of childhood obesity, they recommend that children under the age of one drink absolutely no fruit juice whatsoever. The evidence presented to them finds that there is no nutritional benefit for babies. While the content of vitamins may be high, the amount of sugar – natural or otherwise – found in fruit juices contributes significantly to the erosion of newly emerging teeth.

It is extremely important for parents to make sure they are not feeding their children too much sugar. Read labels and make sure that if your child does consume a fair amount of it that you teach them to brush their teeth. It is never too young to teach your children how to take care of their most important set of bones! This Palm Harbor Pediatric Dentist does her best to teach children how to remove sugar from their teeth with proper brushing. If you have a question about how you can keep your kid’s teeth as healthy as they are, don’t hesitate to ask at your next appointment.

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