Helpful Tips for Tooth Care in the New Year

If you’re like the majority of us at the beginning of the New Year you make resolutions concerning your physical health such as stopping smoking, beginning an exercise program and eating healthier. But what about your dental health? Experts say it only takes 21 days to form a habit so if you begin taking better care of your teeth today, by the end of the month these important tips will already be a part of your daily routine.

  • Begin flossing once a day. There aren’t any hard and fast rules concerning the best time of the day to floss; just make sure you allot enough time to do the job properly.
  • Limit sweets and starches. This might already be part of your losing weight resolution but did you know foods which contain large amounts of either or both can cause a greater build-up of plaque? If allowed to remain on and around the teeth, plaque causes gum irritation which can eventually lead to gum disease and possibly even tooth loss.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables. Fruits like apples and watermelon have higher water content which helps to wash away the natural sugars before they can turn into plaque. Plus the roughness of a carrot stick, apple slice or broccoli floret acts as a natural toothbrush, gently scrubbing away that nasty plaque causing bacteria.
  • Remember the importance of both protein and calcium to help strengthen tooth enamel. Replace those sweet donuts and greasy chips with nuts. Add more lean protein such as skinless chicken, baked instead of fried. Substitute whole milk with the low or non-fat variety.
  • Start the year out right by picking up the phone and scheduling your bi-yearly dental appointments. It is so important to see your dentist on a regular basis to keep any minor problems from turning into something major.

For the best in Crestwood dental care for your entire family please contact the caring staff at Ellis Dental today.

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After School Tooth Friendly Snacks

As a parent, it is important to set a good example when selecting your own snacks and always having healthy choices available for when the kids come home from school starving.

  • After your weekly trip to the grocery store allow the kids to help prep their afternoon snacks for the upcoming week. They will be more apt to select things like carrots, celery, cucumbers and broccoli when they are already cut up and ready to eat. Certain fruits including apples and pears either need to be eaten whole or sliced right before eating to stay visually appealing. Other fruits that are good choices and can be prepared a couple days in advance are grapes, berries and melons.
  • Nuts are a great protein packed snack. Just remember to always purchase the lightly salted selections. Or smear some peanut butter on wheat crackers or unsalted pretzel sticks.
  • Don’t discount dairy. Cottage cheese can be jazzed up with fresh fruit or a tablespoon of unsweetened jam. Low fat/low sugar yogurt with fruit is another great choice. Limit frozen yogurt to a special treat since the freezing process kills off all the good bacteria.
  • Sodas and energy drinks are very damaging when it comes to tooth health. The sweet sticky liquid can remain in the mouth for up to 20 minutes, damaging the enamel and creating cavities. Flavored sparkling water is a much better choice; just make sure it is naturally flavored and doesn’t include artificial or added sweeteners.
  • For older kids who many need more of a meal than a simple snack, keep whole grain bread, low fat cheese and lean protein like chicken or turkey on hand for a quick sandwich.

For a positive lifelong dental experience, please contact Ellis Dental  and schedule an appointment for your toddler or teen today.