We want to take this opportunity to make some suggestions about thoughtful snacking for kids and their parents.
While we know that eating sugar isn’t good for our teeth, we also know that sweets are associated with fun and part of most people’s culture and so we offer our Dental Care Kids patients an annual treat for keeping their dental check ups and being good brushers if that is OK with their parents.
Eating a sugar snack once in a while is not really a problem. The problem is when people eat sugar snacks at meals and then several times a day in between meals as well. Also a sugar filled gummy bear that sticks to the teeth eaten between meals with absolutely no nutritional value is much worse than an ice cream treat eaten once a month that at least has some milk and calcium in it.
As a suggestion we recommend that sugar snacks be considered as a special event and not as a daily habit.
The very first key to thoughtful snacking is to limit the junk foods that you buy and bring home from the store. Junk food people do their advertising on TV when the kids are watching so be aware of what your kids are seeing on children’s TV shows. When you do your shopping, try to “drive the shopping cart around the junk food aisles in the market” so you won’t be overly influenced by your kids.
The frequency you eat sugar is much more significant in so far as cavities are concerned than the total amount of sugar eaten. And sticky treats are worse than ones that do not adhere to the teeth. Pick appropriate times and occasions for snacks and stick to it.