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Foods That Cause Tooth Decay in Kids

Jul 24, 2014 - 07:07 AM EST |  Posted under: Dental Tips, General

Many foods can cause tooth decay in kids, but some are more problematic than others. Candy and simple carbohydrate foods like crackers and chips are all culprits. Other foods that cause tooth decay include certain fruits and juices and any food that tends to accumulate in teeth. How often problem foods are eaten and the length of time food remains in the mouth are both factors that influence the risk of tooth decay in kids.

Sodas Can Destroy Your Kids’ Teeth

Any pediatric dentist will tell you that kids who drink too much soda are at risk of tooth decay and serious illnesses like osteoporosis, heart disease, and diabetes that occur later in life. Prolonged exposure to carbonated beverages erodes tooth enamel, and this leads to cavity formation. Once erosion spread beneath the tooth’s enamel, painful sensitivity can occur. If erosion results in nerve infection, root canal treatment is usually required. It is more harmful to sip a soda throughout the day than to drink it all at once.

Preventing Tooth Decay in Kids

It is impractical to avoid all foods that cause tooth decay, but there are ways to minimize the damage. Teach children to rinse with water after meals to remove sugar and acid. Encourage them to drink tap water that is fluoridated. When they drink sodas and juices, have them use a straw. Most importantly, ensure that kids maintain good oral hygiene by brushing after every meal and flossing daily. Supervise their dental care activities until they are responsible enough to maintain them alone. When they can get dressed and tie their shoes on their own, they are ready to handle their dental care routine without help. The battle against tooth decay in kids should start early. As soon as a child’s first tooth erupts, he or she should start seeing a pediatric dentist for regular checkups.

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