5 Vitamins & Minerals for Strong Teeth
Like any parent, you want your child to grow up healthy and happy. One way to help make that a reality, is to teach them the connection between the foods eaten and oral health. Sure, it can be hard to get them to eat their veggies, but our Hudsonville pediatric dentist encourages diversifying their diet for strong teeth and gums.
Here are 5for your child, plus which foods to stock up on.
The Importance of a Healthy Diet
What your child consumes on a daily basis can have long-term effects on their well-being. For example, if they eat primarily junk food, it’s no surprise when cavities are found down the road, not to mention other health complications later in life. Treats are fine on occasion but overall, there should be a balance.
Your child’s diet ideally should include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and clean protein. Think of that quintessential food pyramid and try to check off something from each layer when shopping at the grocery store. Remember that you lead by example and your child will want to eat foods you yourself enjoy.
Prioritize the Following Essential Vitamins or Minerals:
Calcium is a mineral that everybody knows is good for your bones. Naturally, it’s also beneficial for your child’s teeth. In fact, tooth enamel is primarily composed of calcium. So additional amounts consumed means a strong enamel layer and better tooth decay prevention.
Our pediatric dentist suggests pairing your child’s calcium intake with vitamin D so they can get the most out of foods that are rich in the mineral. Not only will you be keeping your child’s teeth strong, but their bones as well!
Foods that contain calcium:
- Dairy products (milk, yogurt, cheese, etc.)
- Fortified nut, soy, or oat milks
- Leafy greens (broccoli, kale, bok choy, etc.)
- Oranges or figs
- Beans or soybeans
2. Vitamin D
As mentioned above, vitamin D and calcium go hand in hand. After all, it is vitamin D that helps the body absorb calcium, thus strengthening the teeth. Our bodies also produce vitamin D naturally when we’re in the sun so outdoor playtime is beneficial as well.
Foods that contain vitamin D:
- Fish (i.e., salmon)
- Fortified milk or orange juice
- Portobello mushrooms
Admittedly, phosphorus might not spring to mind when you’re consideringfor your child. However, it doesn’t mean it isn’t crucial in its own right. For instance, did you know that our bodies already contain decent amounts of phosphorus and the majority of it can be found in the teeth?
Calcium once again comes into play as it works with phosphorus to build and protect enamel. Keep your child’s baby teeth and incoming adult teeth healthy with protein-rich foods that contain phosphorus.
Foods that contain phosphorus:
- Red meats
- Seafood (i.e., tuna and salmon)
- Dairy products
Much like vitamin D, potassium does wonders for your bone mineral density. It also helps gum tissue heal quicker. This comes in handy when your child loses a baby tooth, starts flossing, or has a tooth injury.
Foods that contain potassium:
- Dark leafy greens
- Milk, yogurt, and cheese
5. Vitamin C
Your child’s gum health greatly benefits from vitamin C. Not only does it help strengthen their gums, but it also does the same for all soft tissue in their mouth. Having strong gums means teeth stay in place and the risk of gum disease is reduced.
Foods that contain vitamin C:
- Citrus fruits
- Sweet potatoes
- Broccoli and spinach
Schedule Your Child’s Next Cleaning
Regular brushing, flossing, and teeth cleanings from our pediatric dentist in Hudsonville, MI, are important. So are the foods you feed your child. When all paired together, your child is destined to have a healthy smile! Call Hudsonville Dental Kids today at (616) 209-4039 to schedule an appointment.