Keep Up Those Summer Smiles
Our favorite pediatric dentist and lovely sponsor, Eduardo Correa D.D.S., gives us parents some summer fun advice for keeping those little pearly whites well…pearly! If your kids are in summer camps, be sure to ask the counselors what kind of snacks and drinks they are providing. Now, keep reading for some expert advice.
Now that the days have warmed, it’s important to keep children well-hydrated and nourished so they can enjoy all of summertime’s wonderful activities. This edition of the I Heart Old Towne Orange Blog covers teeth-friendly versus cavity-causing beverage choices.
In summer, children often increase consumption of sugary liquids such as sports drinks (Gatorade) or juices (apple, grape juice), which all cause tooth decay. Even juices with “No Sugar Added” contain high amounts of sugar because the amount of fruit sugar to make juice is very high. Such beverages pool in the gum pockets, causing tooth damage and decay at the gum lines and between the teeth where cavities are difficult to see! We recommend limiting juice to once a day at mealtime or for special occasions such as picnics or birthday parties. Sports drink should be consumed only when engaging in vigorous activity and should be followed by water to rinse the acidity in the mouth.
Water is the beverage of choice for any child. It is essential to have enough during outdoor activity. The minimum amount of water consumed in ounces should be half of a child’s weight. For example, a 50-pound child should drink at least 25 ounces of water (or 3 cups) in a day, and more if engaged in strenuous activity.
For flavored beverage alternatives, try low-calorie options like Vitamin Water Zero and Sobe Life Water, which are sweetened with calorie-free Stevia, a plant-extract derived sugar substitute. Honest Kids Juice Drink contains just 40 calories per 6 oz. serving and is naturally flavored with organic cane sugar. Whole juices that are minimally processed are also more tooth friendly, but only in moderation!
Little known fact #1: The amount of sugar and acidity in juice is comparable to that of soda.
Example: 12oz Coca Cola = 140 calories = 39 g sugar = 9 level teaspoons of sugar
Example: 12oz Mott’s Organic Apple Juice = 180 calories = 45 g sugar = 11 level teaspoons of sugar
Our best advice: Check the label when making beverage decisions for your children!
Reminder: Summer appointments fill up quickly…bring your child in today to avoid missing summer camp or school!