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3 Surprising Things That Can Damage Children’s Teeth

3 Surprising Things That Can Damage Children’s Teeth

Everybody knows that sugar, in the form of candy, sweets and pop, can do a lot of damage to children’s teeth. You may be surprised to learn that there are hidden sugars lurking in some of these seemingly health (or at least not obviously sugary!) foods.


While natural fruit juices contain lots of healthy vitamins and minerals, fruit juice in general typically contains a lot of sugar. In some cases, there’s not much difference between drinking a glass of juice and drinking a glass of pop, or eating a candy bar. They also often contain enamel-softening acids.

What can I do?

Give your child a straw through which to sip juice, and have her brush her teeth afterwards – but not straight away! Wait about 45 minutes first, to let the softening effects of the acids wear off.

Chewable Vitamins

Chewable vitamins are fun for kids because they taste just like gummy bears – and the fact is, they’re not that different in terms of sugar content. In fact, gummy candies (including vitamins) have a way of sticking to teeth, allowing sugar eating bacteria to grow, which can eventually lead to decay.

What can I do?

If your child takes vitamins, administer them in pill form. You may also want to look into helping your child develop a more balanced diet rich in fruits and veggies (no easy task, we know) so that vitamin supplements are rendered unnecessary.

Barbeque Sauces, Tomato Sauces, and Other Canned or Jarred Condiments

Next time you visit the grocery store, pick up a few cans and jars of the food you sometimes buy and take a look at the ingredients list. You may be surprised to find that they contain sugar – in some cases, lots of it! The fact is, most processed and pre-packaged foods do contain sugar these days. And while they’re fine to eat once in a while, making them a regular staple can do a lot of damage to teeth.

What can I do?

Eat these food in moderation, and whenever possible, make them from scratch. And if you get your kids to help out, cooking from scratch may also have the added benefits of getting them interested in their oral health, and expanding their palettes and the foods they’re willing to eat.

If you have questions about diet and nutrition as it relates to dental health, take a look at our Health & Nutrition Blog, or get in touch with our Smile Town Langley Children’s dentists today!

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