No Dental Insurance?Click Here Request Request an Appointment Forms Complete Our Forms Find Us Like Us on Facebook Reviews Leave a Google Review Referral Doctor Referral Call Map
No Dental Insurance?Click Here
Click Here to Read About Our Commitment to Safety

How School Lunches Affect Your Child’s Oral Health

August 3, 2022

Filed under: Uncategorized — purpleplumdentistry @ 8:24 pm
Child smiling and holding his school lunch.

Your smile is one of the first things that people notice about you—and the same goes for your little one’s smile! And now that a new school year is upon us, it’s important to ensure that your child’s mouth is in tiptop shape as they head back into the classroom. That said, did you know that what they eat throughout the school day actually heavily influences their teeth? Here’s more from your dentist in Falls Church about the link between school lunches and oral health, along with some tips for keeping your child’s smile bright and white by providing healthy options.

The Link Between School Lunches & Oral Health

It goes without saying that everything your child eats can affect their teeth, but what they have for lunch at school can be particularly impactful. The leftover particles from their lunch will remain stuck to their teeth until their evening dental care routine, which could be several hours later! This means that foods high in sugars and starches will have a long while to wreak havoc on your child’s pearly whites.

And to make matters worse, poor oral health can also have a negative impact on your child’s academic success. Research shows that children struggling with dental problems are more likely to not finish all of their assigned work, or to attend class as frequently. On top of this, there are also psychosocial implications; your child might feel embarrassed about their smile which can make social situations difficult.

And lunches offered by cafeterias are typically the most problematic for children and their oral health. There’s no doubt that school lunches are convenient for families with busy schedules or limited options, and recent legislation has made steps towards improving the healthiness of what school cafeterias are offering. Yet certain items still offered, such as chocolate milk, canned fruits, potato chips and more are all high in sugars, starches, and acids that pose a serious threat to enamel. On top of that, school lunches also often lack the same overall nutritional value that a homemade lunch can offer.

Suggestions for Packing Your Child’s School Lunch

Providing healthy options for your child’s school lunch is relatively simple, and it will greatly benefit their smile and in turn, their academic success. There are several great options to consider including:

  • Raw vegetables like carrots, celery, cucumber, and more.
  • Fresh fruits like bananas, apples, kiwis, etc.
  • Nuts like almonds and cashews.
  • Dairy options like cheeses, plain milks, and yogurt.
  • Soups and broths.
  • Sandwiches on whole wheat bread.
  • Water—providing a refillable water bottle or thermos for your child will ensure that their mouth is properly hydrated throughout the day—this will yield numerous benefits!

Knowing how to provide healthy options for your child’s school lunch will go a long way towards improving their oral health and keeping their smile as bright and white as possible. And in turn, they will enjoy a fun and successful school year!

About the Practice

The team at Purple Plum Dentistry is honored to serve the dental needs of the Falls Church area under the leadership of three skilled specialists: Dr. Anita Kianimanesh, Dr. Nima Moradi Majd, and Dr. Karen Kozak. Their practice is proud to offer a wide range of available services including preventive, cosmetic, and restorative care. If you have any questions about the article or would like to arrange a visit, feel free to contact the practice online or over the phone: (703) 998-4244.

No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.