When you’re responsible for your family, it can be overwhelming at times. Some days, you feel like you have to know and watch everything. But if you don’t, who will? At our family dental clinic in Surrey, BC, we know what you have to go through. To give you a hand, here are several tips on how to help your family have healthier, cleaner smiles.
Only drink fruit juice and pop (even diet pop) as an occasional treat.
You know that too much sugar is bad for your teeth. That’s because the harmful bacteria behind cavities and gum disease thrive off carbs and sugars. The more sugar you eat, the more you feed bacteria. You probably already limit how much regular pop your family eats because of that. However, fruit juices can have just as much sugar as regular pop. Of course, they’re often full of vitamin C as well. That’s why you should use them as treats occasionally instead of the standard drink with meals.
The same goes for diet pop, but not because of sugar. To give pop a tangy flavor, manufacturers add a lot of acid. All of that acid corrodes your enamel, weakening your teeth. Again, the occasional drink is fine. Just try to cut down. You can also rinse with water afterward.
Wear mouthguards for sports and cycling.
You can’t really prevent accidents and injuries from happening altogether. Life happens. You could have a bad fall while riding a bike, or a puck or ball could catch you in the mouth. These accidents can chip or crack your enamel. Since you cannot always prevent them, you can help reduce the chances of damaging your teeth with a mouthguard. It’s like wearing a helmet for your teeth. Mouthguards can be the difference between a sore mouth and one with missing teeth. Mouthguards can be bought in most sporting goods stores.
Brush and floss regularly in front of your kids.
Taking care of your teeth at home is easily the biggest thing your family can do for healthy, beautiful smiles. Keeping your teeth and gums clean like that gets rid of the food particles that harmful bacteria need to grow. But brushing and flossing regularly can sometimes be tough, especially with your kids. They’d much rather be playing than brushing. How can you help encourage your children to brush and floss? By letting them see you do it regularly.
Kids are perceptive. As they grow up, they’re trying to figure out what to do. If they never see you taking care of your teeth, they’ll assume it’s not important. Thankfully, the reverse is true. The more they see you taking proper care of your teeth and gums, the more likely your children will start doing the same. It’s not magic, but anything to tip the odds is worthwhile.
Cut down on foods with hidden sugar like ketchup and sports drinks.
Sugar. It tastes so good, but it’s so bad for your dental health. Sugar in drinks like pop or food like candy increases your risk of cavities and gum disease. You know not to let your family drink five cans of regular pop in a row. Likewise, you wouldn’t let your kids eat candy bar after candy bar. But these days, there’s a lot of sugar in foods you may not expect. Foods with “hidden” sugar include yogurt, ketchup, salad dressing, and granola bars.
Sugar is a type of carbohydrate. The bacteria behind cavities love other carbs, too. That means you need to be careful about foods full of carbs. You probably think of breads and cereals, but watch out for sports drinks, too. Many have surprising amounts of both sugar and carbohydrates. All of that can make it harder for your family to take care of their teeth and gums.
Make appointments for everyone in your family at our Surrey, BC dental office every six months.
Brushing and flossing are important, don’t get us wrong. Both are fantastic ways to help keep your mouth clean, which helps your teeth and gums. However, only dental professionals have the specialized training and tools needed to get your teeth professionally cleaned. For example, plaque and tartar can build up on your enamel even with brushing and flossing. Our dental hygienists can remove both to help prevent gum disease.
Plus, early detection is the key to helping keep problems manageable or eliminating them altogether. Dr. Rogers will give your teeth and gums a thorough exam, including digital X-rays, and work with you to create a plan for moving forward.
Dr. Rogers is a general dentist in Surrey, BC who can help you and yours have healthier, better-looking smiles. Call us today at 604-635-1695 ext 1.