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How to Keep Your Child's Teeth Healthy During the Holidays

November 7, 2023

How to Keep Your Child’s Teeth Healthy During the Holidays 

The holidays are just around the corner, with family fun, delicious meals, and plenty of cheer. The holiday festivities can be hard on your little one’s teeth with the abundance of sugary treats, but it doesn’t have to be. Our team at Jet Set Smile Pediatric Dentistry is happy to offer tips to maintain healthy smiles this holiday season and all year long. 

Make Good Oral Hygiene Practices a Top Priority

The holiday season comes along once a year, but your child’s smile needs good care every day. Encourage your child to brush thoroughly for at least two minutes, at least twice daily, and floss daily. Be sure to use an age-appropriate amount of toothpaste, help your little one until around age six, and continue supervising until you’re confident your child is brushing and flossing properly. 

Avoid brushing your child’s teeth right after a sugary or acidic treat, which can soften the tooth enamel. Instead, rinse with water and brush after 30 minutes to allow the tooth enamel to remineralize and build itself up. However tired your child is after a long day or night of celebrations, avoid the temptation of going straight to bed. Try your best to stick to a healthy oral hygiene routine. 

Allow Your Child to Indulge in Moderation

It’s hard to be a Grinch and keep your child from indulging in holiday treats, but moderation is key. Keep your home stocked with healthy options, like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, and lean protein, and save the splurges for when you’re celebrating with family or friends. If there’s a particular event coming up that you know will be heavy on treats, try to limit junk food before and after to maintain a healthy balance.

Choose Mouth-Healthy Holiday Treats

You can still serve your grandma’s favorite recipes with a few healthy tweaks. For example, use whole flour instead of regular white flour and use sweet potatoes, pumpkin, or fruits rather than sugar to add sweetness to your treats. Give baked apples with cinnamon a try rather than an apple pie – your child’s smile will thank you!

Keep Your Child from Snacking or Grazing

Avoid snacking or grazing on holiday treats all day long. The longer your child’s teeth are exposed to sugar, the worse the damage is to their smile. The best time to indulge in sugary snacks is with or after a meal. That’s because your little one’s salivary glands are most active during mealtimes, producing saliva that washes away food particles and neutralizes acids. Limiting snacking or grazing can minimize damage to your child’s smile. 

Encourage Your Child to Drink Plenty of Water

One of the best things you can do for your child’s teeth is to encourage drinking plenty of water. That helps promote saliva flow, neutralizes plaque acids, and helps wash away bacteria and food debris. An occasional festive drink won’t damage your child’s teeth, but lead by example and encourage your child to drink water all day.  

Visit Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry

Remember to schedule dental checkups for your little one this festive season. Routine dental exams and cleanings lower the risk of tooth decay and gum disease, leaving your child’s smile healthy and bright. They also allow our team at Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry to uncover dental issues as they develop, preventing them from getting worse and requiring extensive treatments down the road. 

Preventive Dental Care Near Me in Phoenix, AZ

Visit Jet Set Smiles Pediatric Dentistry for tips on caring for your child’s smile. If you haven’t already had your little one’s smile checked, make sure to schedule a dental exam and cleaning. Dr. Patel and his kid-friendly team look forward to working alongside you to help your child enjoy a healthy smile this holiday season and all year long! We invite you to call our office at 480-284-5076 to schedule your appointment today!