Healthy Birthday Party Treats for Kids

Celebrating your child’s birthday with a group of their friends is something you’ll do often throughout the years. It’s not just a time to gather the friends for entertainment and fun, it’s also the perfect opportunity to create issues with dental health if you’re not careful.

Parties for kids typically include fun finger foods and items pleasing to a child’s palette – like pizza or a plethora of cupcakes and desserts – and of course, let’s not forget the cake!

While a birthday party is hardly a celebration with candles and a cake, there are other ways you can curb the ill effect on teeth by making healthy choices with the snacks at the party. Here are some tips.

Replace Candy with Fruit

Fruit still contains sugar, but a natural form. If the kids will already be consuming cake and other treats at the party, try to cut down on some of their sugar rushes by swapping out candy dishes for fruit slice or skewers. Choose fruits kids find appealing like apple slices, strawberries or grapes.

Hydrate with H2O

Juice is typically the preferred choice of beverage for kids but many contain added sugars that only add to the over-consumption of sweets happening at the party. Not to mention kids will likely be running around and very active at the party, it’s a good idea to have water ready for them to rehydrate. Some bottled waters come in very small size bottles that make the perfect option for the occasion.

Serve Fun Foods

Get creative with food to keep kids interested. Turn a veggie platter into a dish of bugs by arranging the slices in a creative way. Offer fun-flavored dips to go with fresh, crunchy veggies and help keep kids full as they enjoy the entertainment and wait for their well-deserved piece of cake at the end.

At CT Pediatric Dentistry we work to help your child have a healthy and successful future and focus on giving them the best oral care.

Schedule a visit today! 

Protecting Your Child’s Teeth on the Playground

The start of a new school year means more than getting kids back on an early sleep and morning schedule. There’s also the added playground time during school hours and after that increase the chances of an accident happening. Sometimes that injury comes in the form of a dental issue. Being prepared in advance for these possibilities is the best way to defend against them and handle them with composure.

Here’s a closer look at the things you can do to protect your child’s teeth while they enjoy their time running around the playground.

Always Inspect the Grounds

Not just for the safety of your child’s teeth, but it’s important to always check that the playground they’ll be using is safe. Take a few moments to inspect the ground and check for any broken equipment, shard rusted metals or other dangers present.

Keep a Close Eye

It goes without saying that keeping a close watch of your child in any public setting is critical. When they’re busy running about with their peers on the playground it can be easy to lose sight of them as you chit-chat with the other parents. The best way to prevent injury or understand how an issue occurred is to never lose sight of their movements throughout the visit. If rough-play is happening you’ll have the chance to step in and stop it before an injury occurs.

Don’t Play in Inclement Weather

As the seasons change here in New England it can be difficult to predict if it will be a nice day to spend outdoors or one that will be chilly, wet and damp. Playing on swings and other playground equipment under these conditions can be dangerous. The problem with rain, moisture from dewy temps or ice is that everything can become slippery and taking safe steps to use the equipment can quickly turn catastrophic.

At CT Pediatric Dentistry our goal is to keep your child’s oral health and future top of mind. Our kid-friendly methods help kids to feel comfortable in the dentist chair and help them understand the importance of good oral care.

If your child has sustained an injury involving their teeth on the playground – whether a tooth knockout or a chip, don’t risk infection.  Schedule an appointment as soon as possible!


Perfecting Bedtime Routines for Better Oral Health

Without proper supervision, your child’s oral hygiene routine can fall by the wayside. They require proper education that you as a parent or guardian provide to aid them. Here are some of the ways you can demonstrate an oral hygiene routine that helps them avoid the pain of dental issues in their future.

Supervise Your Child While They Brush

Children look up to their parents and most young children want to do what their parents do. Brushing together before bed will allow your child to learn the importance of a routine and the right way to brush their teeth. Doing it consistently allows for the routine to set in place and become something they follow for life. A biproduct of brushing together is that you build a bond between yourself and the child.

Make Brushing a Final Task of the Day

The last thing to touch teeth before bed should be a toothbrush. Brushing your teeth before bed helps avoid the dangers of bacteria that lead to cavities and other issues. While we sleep, saliva is produced less and bacteria feeds on any leftover food or debris. Left in our mouths, these lead to cavities and visits to the dentist.

When to Start Brushing Your Child’s Teeth

When your child’s first tooth comes through their gums it’s time to start your child brushing. Of course, they will not know how to use a toothbrush so doing it for them or purchasing a smaller kid-friendly style toothbrush can make the task easier.  Let them practice with the toothbrush while you guide them with the proper way of using it.

While brushing, make sure to monitor the amount of toothpaste used. Swallowing too much excess toothpaste can be dangerous.

Safe Toothpaste Amounts for Kids

  • 3 and Over = Size of Pea
  • 3 and Under = Grain of Rice

Come Up With A Regular Bedtime Schedule

Having a regular bedtime routine over time your the child to know what to expect as his or her bedtime gets closer each day. Additionally, it can relieve the pressures felt by many parents when it comes time to tuck their kids in bed. In years to come, you should notice your child regularly, without your interference, brushing their teeth the right way before bed.

We Are Here to Help

For more advice or to set up a consultation with one of our dentists give us a call at the CT Pediatric Dentistry location that works best for you.

West Hartford: (860) 523-4213

North Windham: (860) 456-0506

Unionville: (860) 673-3900

Making your child’s oral future a healthy one is our top priority!

Soda, Juice & Your Kid’s Teeth

As a nation, we’re still consuming soft drinks and juices that have been known to do everything from harm our teeth to increase obesity. When it comes to young mouths, it’s especially important to monitor what drinks they’re consuming as small amounts with high concentrations of sugar can easily sneak into our child’s diet.

Soda isn’t the only one to be wary of. Many juices targeted specifically at kids can still be harmful, especially when thinking about cavities and their teeth.

Here are some things to keep in mind when choosing the fluids you’ll be giving your child.

Consider the Damage

It’s easy to brush off reports about the ill effects of juice and soda on your child’s teeth because they, “don’t drink a lot of it” but the amounts of high fructose corn syrup in some of these beverages is nothing to turn an eye to. Not only does one 12oz. can typically have up to 10 teaspoons of sugar in it, but what happens after this dangerous acid makes its way into the mouth is what you really need to consider.

Once the sugar and other acids – if soda is the drink of choice – are mixed in with saliva and the bacteria inside of your child’s mouth, it then latches on to the enamel and starts to erode at the surface. This tooth decay over time leads to cavities that become painful and can even cause long-term issues in the mouth. Many of these juices and drinks also include dyes that can stain the teeth over time and brushing won’t remove the discoloration.

Form Healthy Drinking & Oral Care Habits Early

The great thing about children is that they haven’t had many years to form bad habits. If you tackle the issue early on, it’s much easier to help kids become accustomed to drinking water when they want to hydrate. If soda or juice must be consumed it’s best to limit those drinks to one glass per day and to ensure it’s followed by plenty of water throughout the day.

Regular brushing and flossing twice a day is another important routine to get kids into. Once they understand the importance of regular oral care and how damaging some of these beverages can be to their teeth, it may be easier to convince them to put down the soda can and opt for a glass of cold water instead.

Schedule a routine visit with a pediatric dentist focused on helping young ones care for their teeth. 

Sweet Treats & Our Children: How Much is Too Much?

There’s a debate that’s likely going on right now between parents about whether or not treats and things like candy should be allowed in their diet. There is a lot of proof around the harm these foods can do to health but there’s also a promising reward system that some parents use in an effort to motivate children to form new habits.

Where should that line be drawn when it comes to sugary treats and your child’s dental health?

Here’s are some factors to consider.

Supervised Moderation

Like most things in your child’s life, it’s up to you as a parent to monitor their intake of harmful foods and also to educate them on the importance of eating a healthy well-balanced diet and what sugary foods can do to cause them pain if not consumed responsibly.

Good Aftercare

If it’s a special occasion like a birthday party or holiday and you’re allowing a moderate amount of sweets and candy to be consumed by your child, keep in mind that you should increase their brushing frequency as well to ensure all sugar is removed from inside the mouth. When setting ground rules on treat consumption for these events to be sure to include rules for immediate and extra brushing and cleaning of the mouth area as part of the routine.

Replacing Rewards

It’s not a great idea to use treats and unhealthy sweets to help kid’s complete tasks and create new habits. The issue is that it creates an association in their mind with the treat being a reward and pleasurable when a job is well done. Replace these motivating factors with things like extra TV time, a new book or an outing on the weekend. They’ll still have the chance to earn something they view as rewarding, but not something that’s going to add the possibilities of painful cavities to their future.

At CT Pediatric Dentistry we care profoundly about the health of your child and want to ensure they have the support they need for a healthy oral future. Together with parents, we work to ensure children feel safe at the dentist and make lifelong oral care a part of their life.


Schedule a visit today! 

12 Sep 2016 04:27 PM