Why good nutrition is essential for children’s oral health

Why good nutrition is essential for children’s oral health

Good nutrition lays the foundation for a healthy smile.

Nutrition plays a vital role in promoting good oral health — and this is especially true in the case of children, who require a healthy, balanced diet to build strong bones and teeth.

Read on to learn about why good nutrition is important for a child’s oral health, including which foods to avoid, and how to develop healthy oral hygiene habits in kids.

What is the link between good nutrition and good oral health?

Children require a balanced, nutritious diet in order to ensure that their teeth and bones develop properly.

It is also important to limit the amount of sugar that children consume, as sugary snacks and drinks can undermine their oral health from a young age.

Children need protein, vitamins and minerals to build strong bones and teeth. A nutritious diet will also promote good general oral health, minimising the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Conversely, a lack of nutrition in a child’s diet may lead to oral health problems that persist into adulthood.

Foods to include in your child’s diet

Incorporating nutritional food choices into your child’s diet is one of the best, most responsible things you can do to promote lasting oral health.

  • Ensure that you provide nutrient-dense foods such as meat, poultry, fish, green leafy vegetables and fresh fruit every day.
  • Pay particular attention to foods rich in phosphorus and calcium for developing healthy bones, such as cheese, milk, plain yoghurt, tofu and eggs.
  • Foods (particularly fresh fruit) that are high in antioxidants can improve immunity and promote gum health, while Vitamin A helps to strengthen tooth enamel.

Role model good dietary choices for your children. When you are thirsty, drink water, and encourage them to follow your lead. Involve your kids (and their friends) in the preparation of healthy snacks to build enthusiasm.

Foods to restrict in your child’s diet

Although children typically love sugary snacks and drinks, unfortunately, these are exactly the types of food that should be minimised in your child’s diet.

Sticky sweets and fizzy drinks are the worst offenders, coating your child’s teeth in sugary deposits that bacteria then feed off, potentially leading to oral health problems such as tooth decay and gum disease. Other dietary choices to be wary of include acidic food and drinks, which can wear down tooth enamel.

How to build good oral hygiene habits with your child

In addition to the dietary recommendations outlined above, take steps to promote lasting oral hygiene by establishing good habits from an early age.

  • In situations such as birthday parties, where high sugar intake is perhaps inevitable, encourage your children to rinse their mouths with water after eating and drinking.
  • Supervise your child as they brush their teeth. Whenever possible, brush your teeth at the same time as your child to show them the importance of excellent dental hygiene.
  • Schedule regular dental check-ups for your child. As children tend not to communicate oral issues until they develop into serious concerns, regular dental appointments are the best way to keep track of your child’s oral health during the important developmental stages.

How can we help?

At Hyde Park Dental Care, we can help your child attain optimal oral health for life. Regular visits to the dentist will assist in promoting and maintaining excellent oral health. Keeping regular appointments from an early age can help a child to build trust for future visits to the dentist. For more information about our children’s dentistry services, please read here.

At Hyde Park Dental Care, our mission is to provide a level of service and clinical excellence that exceeds our patients’ expectations. Our dental practice is conveniently located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD and features the latest dental technologies to ensure a comfortable and professional experience. To book an appointment to meet our skilled and experience team, please contact us here.

Smiling is one of the most important communication skills a person can utilise to generate personal and professional success. Our treatments are tailored specifically to enhance your smile and your total oral health. For more information about our restorative, cosmetic, preventive and general dentistry services, please consult our website.

Don’t forget to share this via , Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn.