Valentine’s Day is fast approaching. This holiday has plenty of candies, chocolates, and sweets for your child to eat. When your child is at school, they will be able to get a hold of sweet treats that you might not know about. Overzealous family members may also give your child an abundance of candy during this holiday. You do not want your child to miss out on Valentine’s Day, however, you will want to limit their intake of these sugary sweets to avoid dental problems in the future.
Some treats your child will receive this holiday will include chocolate-covered fruit, hard candy, sticky candy, and chocolate. While the sugary treats are very delicious, they can do damage to your child’s overall oral health. Sticky and hard candy is known for coating the teeth with sugar. This sugar is very hard to remove from the teeth with just regular brushing. Some people think that the best idea after eating hard and sticky candy is to immediately brush the teeth. However, this can actually cause damage to the enamel of the teeth. Instead of brushing teeth right after eating the sweets, have your child immediately rinse their mouth out with water to get the residue off of their teeth. You can then have them brush their teeth within an hour of eating the sugary treat.
While you will not be able to control your child Valentine’s Day treats 24-7, you can have some delicious alternatives that your dentist will approve of:
- Red berries. Instead of chocolates, consider placing red berries like strawberries or raspberries inside of a heart-shaped box.
- Sandwiches. Consider making your child heart-shaped sandwiches with a heart-shaped cookie cutter. Make sure that you use whole grain bread, vegetables, cheese, and a meat.
- Cakes. Consider making a small cake for your child, but put in applesauce instead of oil, or do not frost the cake.
- Breakfast. Consider making your child Valentine’s Day breakfast. You can make your child’s egg into a heart-shaped using a cookie-cutter, or you can use a cookie-cutter to make heart-shaped pancakes. Top them with strawberry jam to make them look more festive for the holiday.
- Ice pops. Consider getting a heart-shaped popsicle maker, and using real fruit juice to make a Valentine’s Day popsicle.
- Fresh fruit. If you plan on doing an ice cream sundae to celebrate the holiday, consider taking out the sugary sweet toppings and replacing them with fruits, nuts, and honey.
- Dipping chocolates. Instead of sugary filled candy, consider getting a fondue pot and melting chocolate. Once you melt the chocolate give your child a broad variety of fruits to dip in the chocolate. This gives them the sweetness they are craving, without all the sugar.
It is important not to take away everything from your child this Valentine’s Day. After all, is a holiday that only comes once a year. Sweets are fine in moderation, but it is better to seek out some of the alternatives above to avoid any issues with tooth decay. If you find that your child has overindulged in sweets, and you are concerned about their teeth, please give us a call today to set up an appointment. We are happy to ensure that your child’s dental health is in excellent condition.