One of the things we’ve found most challenging during these stay-at-home-quarantine times is the constant snacking that goes in our household–and not only with the kids but us adults too! Depending on what you snack on, the habit can be really bad for our dental health
How Does Snacking Damage Our Teeth?
The acid made by bacteria in your mouth mixes with food attacks your tooth enamel. Your tooth’s enamel is the hard, protective layer and when it’s worn down, your teeth are at risk for tooth decay. Constant snacking can be really bad for your teeth because the acid attacks the enamel again and again.
Here are a few things that have worked for our families:
1. Make a schedule – Decide what time you’ll eat meals and snacks and stick to your plan.
2. Let the kids pick a treat – Dr. Asha lets her kids decide on one “unhealthy,” sugary treat. They write it on the calendar so it’s special, like Ice Cream Friday or Cookie Day Saturday.
3. Timing counts – It’s not really about the amount of sugar that’s bad for our teeth– though too much can be unhealthy for other reasons! But for our teeth it’s frequency that matters. So have special treats after lunch and rinse with water afterward.
4. Keep healthy options front and center – While special treats can be kept out of sight, out of mind, try having items like fruit, cheese, nuts, and veggies like baby carrots, cucumbers or sliced bell peppers within easy reach. We’ve got more snack ideas in this post. Not only will these things help with dental health, but the fruits and veggies will help your immunity, which is crucially important during these times.
5. Stay hydrated – Drink plenty of water throughout the day; water is essential for your body and helps wash food off your teeth during the day. Dr. Asha and her kids fill up water bottles for each person and keep them around during their day at home. On her kitchen white board they keep track of how much water each person drinks. The kids get excited about it and after finishing a cup or bottle of water they love to go give themselves a tally mark.
We hope you and your family are healthy and doing well with this stay-at-home time. While we cannot see routine patients until orders are lifted, we ARE open for emergencies. Please also feel free to message us on social media or call us directly if you have any questions or concerns.