Stocking stuffers are one of those things parents rarely spend a lot of time thinking about. They tend to just grab whatever small items they can think of or that are easy to find, such as candy, gums, sweet treats, and tiny toys. Grabbing these types of items may be a quick and easy solution, but it isn’t always the best as it results in purchasing useless toys and unhealthy snacks.
Instead of stuffing your child’s stocking with a bunch of useless or unhealthy items why not choose stuff that will help improve the health of your child’s teeth and gums. In an effort to help you save time this holiday season, we have created a list of mouth-healthy stocking stuffers.
Can’t Go Wrong with a Toothbrush
It may seem practical, but really you can’t go wrong with adding one or two toothbrushes to your child’s stocking. After all, you should be switching out your child’s toothbrush every three to four months, so this will come in handy in the future.
When shopping for a toothbrush to use as a stocking stuffer, consider finding a special one that your child will enjoy. Toothbrushes come in a variety of different colors and even feature characters from your children’s favorite movies and TV shows. Picking one of these types of toothbrushes will not only make the gift seem special, it could make it fun for your child to brush their teeth.
Want to Give Candy? Pick Sugar-free Options or Gum Sweetened with Xylitol
Avoid disappointing your child by only giving them a stocking filled with healthy practical items and make sure to add a few sugar-free candies or gum sweetened with xylitol. These items will allow your child to enjoy a sweet treat without completely damaging their teeth.
In fact, gum sweetened with xylitol has been proven to improve people’s oral health. It has been proven in various dental studies that chewing this type of gum increases saliva production which helps keep your mouth healthy by removing harmful bacteria and plaque.
Have an Athlete in the Family? Get a Mouth Guard
If you have a child who is an athlete you know how easy it is for mouth guards to go missing. Even if your child doesn’t misplace them or lose them, they still need to be replaced every couple of months as bacteria can build up in them. Luckily, mouth guards make great stocking stuffers.
Slip a brand new mouth guard into your child’s stocking this year and they will be fully prepared to engage in favorite sports activities without worrying about if their teeth will be damaged.
Flavored Toothpaste and Dental Floss
Children go through a lot of toothpaste and dental floss. Fill your child’s stocking with some flavored toothpaste and dental floss. It is practical and something they will use every day.
Why flavored toothpaste and dental floss? Children tend to find brushing and flossing to be a boring task. Using flavored toothpaste and dental floss will make the experience more fun. If your child is having fun, they are more likely to make sure they brush and floss at least twice a day.
Getting a stocking full of toothbrushes, toothpaste, and dental floss can be disappointing especially if you are a child who was looking forward to sweet treats. Help your child avoid being disappointed by adding some healthy snacks to their stocking.
Some options for healthy snacks include:
- Small bags of nuts
- Dark chocolate – just make sure to have your child eat this in moderation
- Granola or granola bars
If your child has a favorite snack that they don’t get a lot, consider splurging and purchasing it as a stocking stuff. Just make sure it isn’t something that is high in sugar or too sticky/crunchy.
While you are thinking and planning ahead for the holiday season, why not take the time to schedule a post-holiday dental exam and professional cleaning for your child with the wonderful staff at Dr. Maggie Davis’ pediatric dental office. Call our office today to schedule an appointment with us.