Fruit Smoothies May Be Hazardous to Your Kids Teeth

Fruit smoothies have been touted by some companies as an easy and tasty way to get your child to eat the two to four daily servings of fruit recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in its food pyramid. But fruit smoothies may not be all their proponents claim. And a new study suggests that fruit smoothies may be hazardous to the teeth.

A typical fruit smoothie is made of fresh or frozen fruit pureed with fruit juice into a cold, thick beverage. Some smoothies add milk, yogurt or another dairy product to improve their consistency and taste. Although some people make their own smoothies at home, many commercially made smoothies are available. These often contain added sugar and other ingredients.

An investigation published in February 2013 by the British Dental Journal tested a range of fruit smoothies for their potential impact on teeth. The authors used four commercial all-fruit smoothies that included such fruits as strawberries, bananas, kiwis, apples, pomegranates, blueberries and acai, along with one commercial smoothie that was 73% yogurt and a homemade smoothie made of strawberries, bananas and a blend of apple, orange, grape and lime juice. They analyzed the chemical makeup of each drink and tested its effect on previously extracted teeth.

Food and drink with too much acid have the potential to harm tooth enamel. The results of this study showed that each of the all-fruit smoothies had acid levels that could cause damage to teeth. Only the smoothie that was nearly three-quarters yogurt did not have troublesome acidity levels. Smoothies that included apples, kiwi or lime altered the surface hardness of the teeth.

Although fruits are naturally sweet, many commercially available smoothies also have a significant amount of sugar added. One “super-sized” smoothie offered by a popular national chain has been found to include more than 169 grams of sugar. Besides the danger that consuming all that extra sugar poses to your child’s teeth, a 12-ounce smoothie may exceed 500 calories. An extra 500 calories daily would equal a weight gain of one pound per week.

None of this means that you should not give your child a fruit smoothie. Smoothies can be a good source of vitamin C and other nutrients. And smoothies made with yogurt or milk provide calcium while having less harmful acid than pure fruit smoothies. But if you are not making the smoothies yourself, read the label carefully to know exactly what your child is drinking.

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588Winnipeg Kids Dentist

Caring For Sensitive Teeth

Does drinking a cold soft drink or eating hot soup make your child wince? If so, he or she may be one of the more than 40 million Americans with sensitive teeth.

Tooth sensitivity develops when a tooth loses its protective layers. The part of the tooth above the gum line is protected by a layer of enamel, the hardest substance in the body. A softer layer of a material extends below the gum line and protects the tooth roots. Under this lies a layer of dentin. All these protective layers shield the tooth pulp, which contains nerves and blood vessels. When the enamel and dentin are worn away or a tooth root is exposed, hot, cold or acidic foods—even breathing in cold air—can stimulate nerve cells in the pulp and cause a short, sharp pain.

What can you do to stop this pain? First, take your child to see the dentist if the sensitivity lasts more than a few days. Worn fillings or crowns, cracked teeth, a developing abscess, tooth grinding at night, receding gums or gingivitis—sore, swollen, or inflamed gums—can cause tooth sensitivity. These problems need to be treated.

If your child’s mouth gets a clean bill of health, we may recommend some or all of the following:

  • Choose the right toothpaste. Some people develop sensitivity to tartar-control or whitening toothpastes. Ask your dentist whether an American Dental Association–approved fluoridated desensitizing toothpaste might be right for your child.
  • Brush correctly. Have your child brush gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush. If the bristles on the brush are bent, your child is brushing too hard.
  • Choose the correct mouthwash. Acidic mouthwashes can worsen tooth sensitivity. Ask your dentist to recommend a neutral fluoridated mouthwash for your child.
  • Become more aware of what your child eats. Acidic drinks such as juice and colas can wear away protective enamel.
  • We can apply a fluoride gel, fluoride varnish or dentin sealer to protect the tooth’s roots.

Do not let tooth sensitivity ruin your child’s enjoyment of food. Talk to us about ways to protect your child’s teeth.

 

 

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

3 Secret To Healthy Teeth and a Great Smile!

Nobody likes to get cavities. Brushing and flossing will help your child avoid the dentist’s drill, but there are other, lesser-known ways to keep your child’s mouth healthy and beautiful.

Secret #1: Eat right—keep your smile bright and your teeth healthy

A healthy diet, rich in whole grains and vegetables and low in processed foods, benefits every part of a child’s body—even the pearly whites. Most of us know that fluoride is important for children’s oral health, but other minerals and vitamins can help reduce gum disease and strengthen teeth. Calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, and vitamins A and D are important for building and protecting tooth enamel; antioxidants (found in many fresh fruits and vegetables) help the body ward off infection, which can lead to gum disease. Since all of these can be found in healthy foods, eating right can be a great tool in your child’s fight against cavities.

Secret #2: Attack the plaque

Starchy or sugary foods mix with the acids in saliva and form a sticky substance called plaque. If the plaque sits on your child’s teeth too long, it can lead to decay (cavities). Brushing, chewing sugarless gum with xylitol or rinsing out your child’s mouth 30 minutes after eating will help remove the plaque, but another idea is to focus on regular meals. Snacking throughout the day means that your child’s mouth is exposed to more bacteria, and, realistically, most children are not going to remember to brush every time they eat. And when they do snack, children should stick to tooth-friendly snacks like cheese or veggies.

Secret #3: Shun the sugary drinks

Speaking of plaque-forming acid, some of the main culprits of tooth decay in children are soda and sugary fruit drinks. These tend to have a high acid content, which erodes tooth enamel—even diet sodas, despite being sugar-free, are highly acidic. When enamel is not strong, teeth are more prone to cavities. Have your child avoid soda and candy as much as possible, and, if children do indulge, make sure they brush their teeth soon afterward.

 

 

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

 

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

The Key To Healthy Tooth Enamel in Children’s Teeth

Tooth enamel, the hardest tissue in the human body, protects teeth from daily wear and tear. If properly cared for, the enamel that covers your child’s teeth is designed to last a lifetime. Although enamel will become worn with normal use, establishing good habits in childhood can go a long way toward keeping the hard covering stable and healthy. Here are a few tips for protecting enamel:

  • Limit sugar-laden foods and drinks. Sugar triggers the production of acid in your child’s mouth. Foods that are both sweet and sticky are especially bad for enamel. Beverages like soda pop frequently contain other ingredients such as citric or phosphoric acid that can be harmful to enamel.
  • Focus on foods that protect enamel. Dairy products help strengthen and protect dental enamel while neutralizing acids in the mouth that can erode enamel over time. If your child likes orange juice, choose a juice with calcium added to help neutralize the juice’s natural acid.
  • Brush thoroughly but gently. Make sure your child uses a soft brush and does not scrub teeth too vigorously. It’s also a good idea to wait about an hour after eating before brushing because some foods can soften enamel, making it more prone to brush-related damage.
  • Look out for chlorine. If your child swims, make sure the gym or pool he or she uses checks and maintains the proper water pH level. Improperly chlorinated pools can become acidic. Tell your child to keep his or her mouth closed when swimming to avoid having his or her teeth come into contact with the water.
  • Drink lots of water. Especially after periods of strenuous play or exercise, drinking water helps keep teeth and gums clean and moist, and reduces levels of harmful bacteria.
  • Avoid the daily grind. Many children grind their teeth at night, a habit that can erode enamel significantly over time. If your child is a grinder, ask us about tooth guards to prevent damage.
  • Visit the dentist regularly. The best way to monitor your child’s tooth enamel for signs of damage is to make sure he or she sees the dentist every six months. Other ways to protect enamel include the use of oral care products containing fluoride.

Start early and monitor your child’s oral health to ensure that the tooth’s enamel will remain intact throughout his or her entire lifetime.

 

 

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

 

Winnipeg Kids Dentist

The Link Between Solid Foods and Cavities in Kid’s Teeth

Dental problems such as cavities (also known as dental caries) can have a major impact on children. Pain and the effect on their appearance may not only leave children feeling bad but can also result in a lifelong fear of dentists. This leaves many parents wondering just how and when to start preventing cavities.

A recent study has shed some light on a factor you may not have considered: how you feed your child. While many parents may think cavity prevention starts only when their child has his or her first tooth, what and how you feed your baby appears to play a crucial role. Certain feeding practices can lead to severe early childhood caries. When that occurs, your child can suffer from

  • pain
  • chewing problems
  • speech difficulties
  • poor self-esteem

On top of that, it can be costly to treat severe early childhood caries. Just as your eating habits affect your likelihood of developing cavities, so too do your child’s feeding practices. Children who are breastfed seven or more times a day after they are 12 months old are thought to have a higher incidence of cavities.

Another risky behavior is using a bottle for liquids other than milk. The number of meals and snacks can similarly put your child at a higher risk for cavities.

When it comes to feeding, what you do today can have consequences later for your child. We have information on how you can help prevent cavities in your child. Simple measures such as avoiding or reducing the consumption of foods high in sugar can help. Appropriate intervals between feedings can also make a difference.

Research shows it is critically important that you receive advice before your child transitions from an exclusive milk diet to solid foods.

 
We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

Winnipeg Kids Dentist

The Link Between Brushing Your Kids Teeth and Healthy Gums

It is important that you brush your teeth and gums at least twice a day—even better, after every meal, if you can. Brushing removes plaque, a film of bacteria that clings to teeth. When bacteria in plaque come into contact with food, they produce acids. These acids lead to cavities.

Although brushing your teeth seems like a very easy thing everyone can do, you should teach your children the most effective way to brush by modeling your own behavior. Here are ten tips to accomplish this task:

  • Place a pea-sized dab of fluoride toothpaste on the bristles of a soft toothbrush.
  • Place the toothbrush against the teeth at a 45º angle to the gum line.
  • Move the brush across the teeth back and forth gently in short strokes, cleaning one tooth at a time, using a small, circular motion. Keep the tips of the bristles against the gum line. Avoid pressing so hard that the bristles lie flat against the teeth; only the tips of the toothbrush clean the teeth. Let the bristles reach into the spaces between the teeth.
  • Brush the outer surfaces, the inner surfaces and the chewing surfaces of all the teeth. Make sure the bristles get into the grooves and crevices.
  • Use the same small, circular motion to clean the backsides of the upper and lower teeth—the sides that face the tongue.
  • To clean the inner surface of the bottom front teeth, angle the head in an up-and-down position toward the bottom inside of the mouth and move the toothbrush in  several up-and-down strokes.
  • For the inside of the top front teeth, angle the brush in an up-and-down position with the tip of the head pointing toward the roof of the mouth. Move the toothbrush in  several up-and-down strokes.
  • Give your tongue a few gentle brush strokes, brushing from the back forward. Do not scrub. This helps remove bacteria and freshens your breath
  • After brushing your teeth for two to three minutes, rinse your mouth well with water.
  • In addition to brushing, it is important to floss teeth once a day. Flossing gets rid of food and plaque between the teeth, where the toothbrush cannot reach. If plaque stays between teeth, it can harden into tartar, which must be removed with a professional cleaning. Antibacterial mouth rinses (there are fluoride mouth rinses, as well) can also reduce bacteria that cause plaque and gum disease, according to the American Dental Association.

    Taking care of your teeth and gums on a regular daily basis will keep breath fresh and teeth clean, while holding cavity-causing bacteria at bay.

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

Susan

 

7 Ways to Protect Your Children’s Teeth

Protecting your child’s teeth from an early age is the best way to minimize tooth- and mouth-related problems as your child grows. Use this seven-step plan to develop an oral hygiene strategy that works for you and your child:

1. See the dentist early. Ideally, your goal should be to take your child to see a dentist by her first birthday.

2. Start brushing with the first tooth. Although many parents may not feel a need to brush a baby’s first teeth, keeping even the earliest teeth clean and healthy is critical to good oral health later on.

3. Reconsider the bedtime bottle. Letting a child take a bottle of juice, formula or milk to bed is an invitation for decay development. If your child must have a bottle, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises filling it only with water.

4. Use sippy cups wisely. Sugary beverages + prolonged use of sippy cups = tooth decay. The AAP also recommends giving children no more than four ounces of 100% fruit juice per day and restricting sugary beverages to mealtimes only. Many pediatricians and pediatric dentists advise giving juice only as a treat.

5. Say “bye-bye” to the binky. Pacifiers may be appropriate for infants and until a child turns two, but after that, the pacifier should be avoided to avoid misalignment of the teeth and jaw, which can promote tooth decay and be costly to correct.

6. Keep an eye on medicines. Many pediatric medicines contain sugar and can promote the growth of bacteria, and prolonged use of antibiotics may cause a fungal infection called thrush. Children using medications to treat chronic conditions are at greater risk for tooth decay, so be sure to discuss these risks with your pediatrician or pediatric dentist.

7. Stay firm. Although children may complain about brushing and flossing, you’re not doing them any favors by allowing them to avoid good oral care. Get them involved by letting them choose, with your guidance, their own toothpaste or toothbrush, and reward efforts with stickers or other small tokens to keep them motivated.
We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.We care about your child’s dental health 12 months.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

kids dentist Winnipeg

 

The Link between Oral Health and Good Grades

Did you know that your children’s oral health can have a significant impact on their school attendance and performance? Studies show that 51 million school-hours are lost in the United States each year due to oral problems. All those absences lead to lower grade point averages for children with poor oral health. Yet even when present in class, these children may be in pain and unable to focus on schoolwork.

Dental problems can interfere with a child’s ability to eat, speak, socialize and sleep, all of which may affect school performance and can have long-term consequences. Fortunately, most childhood dental problems can be prevented with good oral hygiene and regular dental checkups during which problems can be detected and treated before they become serious.

Some parents may think there is no reason to take a child to the dentist unless he or she complains of pain. But by that time, decay and infection could already have caused your child to miss school or perform poorly. In fact, research proves that, unlike absences caused by dental pain or infection, absences for routine dental care are not associated with poorer school performance.

On your own, you can protect your child’s oral health by making sure your child

  • engages in a daily brushing and flossing regimen
  • follows a healthy diet
  • avoids sugary treats and frequent snacking, both of which can lead to tooth decay

Fluoride is one of the best preventive measures against childhood cavities. Most communities supply fluoridated drinking water. Check with our office; if your community does not fluoridate its water, ask us for advice about fluoride toothpaste and other options.

Good oral health goes hand-in-hand with better school performance and better career opportunities in adulthood. Taking an active role in your child’s oral health will enhance your child’s chances of success in school.

 

 

We care about your child’s dental health 12 months of the year. To maintain proper oral hygiene, we want to keep you informed and provide useful information. We hope you find these articles informative and helpful, and we look forward to seeing you at your child’s next appointment.

For More Information Contact our Winnipeg Childrens Dental Office. Its just for Kids! -(204)201-0588

 

Winnipeg Kids Dentist

 

 

It’s Never Too Early to Prevent Cavities

It’s Never Too Early to Prevent Cavities

Winnipeg Childrens Dentist Dr. M.B VodreyDental problems such as cavities (also known as dental caries) can have a major impact on children. Pain and the effect on their appearance may not only leave children feeling bad but can also result in a lifelong fear of dentists. This leaves many parents wondering just how and when to start preventing cavities.

A recent study has shed some light on a factor you may not have considered: how you feed your child. While many parents may think cavity prevention starts only when their child has his or her first tooth, what and how you feed your baby appears to play a crucial role. Certain feeding practices can lead to severe early childhood caries. When that occurs, your child can suffer from

  • pain
  • chewing problems
  • speech difficulties
  • poor self-esteem

On top of that, it can be costly to treat severe early childhood caries. Just as your eating habits affect your likelihood of developing cavities, so too do your child’s feeding practices. Children who are breastfed seven or more times a day after they are 12 months old are thought to have a higher incidence of cavities.

Another risky behavior is using a bottle for liquids other than milk. The number of meals and snacks can similarly put your child at a higher risk for cavities.

When it comes to feeding, what you do today can have consequences later for your child. We have information on how you can help prevent cavities in your child. Simple measures such as avoiding or reducing the consumption of foods high in sugar can help. Appropriate intervals between feedings can also make a difference.

Research shows it is critically important that you receive advice before your child transitions from an exclusive milk diet to solid foods.

 

Dr M.B. Vodrey is a Pediatric Dentist in Winnipeg Manitoba