With a staggering 160 dental removals every day in the United Kingdom alone (that’s 40,000 per year!), we can’t help but ask the following question: How did we get here?
The answer, according to medical experts, is diet.
The food you eat can affect your general well-being and your dental health. Experts warn that too many children consume more than the recommended daily intake of sugar — before they even get out the door in the morning. When children consume sugary food and drink, their risk for having tooth decay heightens.
An Ugly Outcome
The number of children under the age of 18 affected by tooth decay has risen dramatically. When hospitals in England and Whales report that they perform more than 100 dentistry interventions a day, it’s hard to ignore the importance of seeing a dentist regularly.
Ending up in the hospital is much more traumatizing than the routine dentist appointment, so parents need to make preventative oral care a priority for their families.
Cause for Concern
While it’s true that children from low-income families are more likely to have dental issues, the reality is that dental health can be a problem for children from all socioeconomic backgrounds.
Sugar damages teeth regardless of income and social class. And when it’s consumed regularly, in large amounts, while oral health is neglected, it can lead to the excruciating experience of tooth removal.
The Dark Side of Sugar
When sugar is consumed, there are immediate effects to the teeth, and these effects can be caused by sugar alternatives as well. Sugar consumption allows acids to attack the teeth and corrode and destroy enamel.
Because not many people are even aware of how much sugar they eat, Britain and other western countries have introduced laws that would make products that are rich in sugar content, less accessible. The effectiveness is yet to be seen.
Teach Your Kids About the Importance of Oral Care
Discussing the importance of proper oral hygiene to your kids when they’re young can be difficult, but it’s necessary to teach them how to keep their teeth and gums healthy — especially considering that children establish habits by age nine.
If you don’t want your child to end up in the hospital with a painfully swollen tooth, preventative care is key.
Lead by example when teaching healthy oral care habits to your children, and limit the intake of sugar as much as possible.