Helping Kids’ Smiles Stay Healthy This Holiday Season

The holiday season means so much, but it can also mean trouble for your kids’ teeth and gums. Call us today at 256-274-8680 to schedule dental cleanings and dental exams for your kids. Dr. Betts holds a Fellowship from the Academy of General Dentistry, giving him more training and education than the average dentist. With his help, your kids can get through the holiday season intact.

Higher Risk Of Gum Disease And Cavities

The holidays usually involve plenty of food, especially sweets like cookies, cakes, and sodas. The problem is that sugar increases your kids’ risk of getting gum disease and cavities.

Both problems are caused by harmful bacteria living in the mouth. They thrive off sugar. The more sugar your kids eat, the more they feed those bacteria. As they grow out of control, they secrete an acid that leads to gum disease and cavities.

That’s why it’s important to call our Decatur, AL dental office today and schedule dental cleanings and dental exams. Our hygienists can remove bacteria by getting rid of plaque and tartar they call home. Dr. Betts has years of experience, helping him to find any problems while they are still small and manageable.

What Parents Can Do This Holiday Season For Healthy Smiles

That said, here are some tips so you can help your kids’ teeth and gums survive the holidays intact.

Toss out the candy canes

It’s the holidays. It makes sense for people to enjoy some treats. However, not all holiday treats are the same when it comes to your kids’ dental health. Candy canes are basically pure sugar. As your kids eat them, they turn into liquid sugar that coats their teeth and gums. This feeds the harmful bacteria just like you want to avoid.

Plus, the point on a candy cane can get sharp enough to damage their gums. Between that and the sugar content, it’s best to toss out the candy canes this holiday season. There will be plenty of other treats to enjoy.

Skip the sticky sweets like caramel

Speaking of other treats, there’s one more that your kids should avoid. Caramel, toffee, and other sticky sweets easily get trapped on your kids’ teeth and gums. Even drinking water won’t get rid of all that sugar.

Sticky sweets pile up food for harmful bacteria in the mouth. As with candy canes, your kids will probably have plenty of other options for a holiday treat.

Stick to brushing and flossing routines

This one can be very important but very tough. The holidays often involve traveling, guests, and big disruptions to routines. Just not having to go to school can be a big change. With all that chaos, it’s easy for your kids to forget about brushing, flossing, and their dental hygiene routines.

Keep that in mind this holiday season. You know your kids, so brainstorm ways to help them stick to those much-needed routines. For example, you might try putting their toothbrushes on their pillows in the morning. That way, your overtired kids will see the brush at night and remember to brush their teeth.

Never open anything with teeth

Presents are a mainstay of the holidays. These days, many presents are wrapped tight in packaging, boxes, and molded plastic. It can be tough to open those, which is why many kids will resort to using their teeth.

Don’t let your kids do this. One slip, and they might slam their teeth together hard enough to damage the enamel. Plus, any packaging that strong can easily hurt their gums. Keep a pair of strong scissors on hand and help your kids open their gifts this holiday season.

Stay hydrated and rinse with water right after snacking

Drinking plenty of water over the holidays helps several ways. Saliva helps wash away food particles that feed those harmful bacteria. By staying hydrated, your kids can ensure their have plenty of saliva to do that. In addition, drinking water can rinse acid and food particles from your kids’ teeth and gums.

Call us TODAY at 256-274-8680 or use our online form to schedule dental appointments for your kids. Dental cleanings and dental exams need to happen at least every six months. Given how the holidays can create new problems, it only makes sense to visit the dentist after they’re over.