Waterford, MI Dentist
Lloyd H. Alpert, D.D.S.
4025 Highland Road
Waterford, MI 48328
(248) 682-6010

Posts for tag: Teeth and back to school

Press Releases


PARSIPPANY, N.J. (September. 26, 2012) – Delta Dental of New Jersey, a dental benefits company serving New Jersey and Connecticut, is reminding parents to pack an apple instead of a sugary snack in a child’s lunch box this fall to help improve their child’s oral health and educational performance. The company recently added a video to their Dental Connections YouTube series: Eat Right for Healthy Teeth that’s full of easy-to-use ideas just right for back-to-school time. After all, children eat more than 20 percent of their meals at school during the academic year.

“Kids should be focused on learning, not on being hungry or feeling tired and sluggish all afternoon” said Douglas B. Keck, D.M.D., M.S.H.Ed., a Connecticut-based pediatric dentist. “Limit high sugar drinks and snacks, which are bad for the teeth as well as the rest of the body.”

The fact that children in America (especially those from lower income families) suffer from poor nutritional habits is no real surprise. However, children of all income levels tend to choose fast food and sugary snacks over more nutritious options. A report from the USDA Economic Research Service claimed that the average child under the age of 12 consumes 49 pounds of sugar per year!1

Overconsumption of sugar harms a child’s oral and overall health, according to New Jersey pediatric dentist Suzy Press, D.D.S., M.S. “Snacks like cookies, candy, and chewy fruit snacks mix with bacteria in the sticky plaque that constantly forms on teeth to generate acid, which can wear away enamel and cause tooth decay,” she said. “While sweets may provide a temporary jolt for kids, that sugar rush soon turns into a crash and kids are left feeling lethargic. That is not the kind of mental state kids need to prepare for an afternoon of classes.”

Instead, Delta Dental recommends these top five oral health best practices:

After breakfast, before leaving for school, make sure your child brushes well with a fluoridated toothpaste. Brushing immediately following a meal helps clean teeth and eliminates halitosis (bad breath).

Fill a child’s lunch box with healthy lunch food and snacks such as lean meats, whole grain breads, low-fat yogurt or cheeses, apples, bite-size carrots and baked chips or whole-grain crackers. Besides being packed with nutrients, certain fruits and veggies can even help clean the teeth and gums. Make treats a treat. Serve sugary sticky snacks like cookies, cake, brownies, and candy only in moderation. Class mothers (or fathers) should discuss bringing in healthy snacks along with sugary treats for birthdays and other classroom parties.

If a child chews gum and the school allows it, chewing sugar-free gum for a few minutes in between lunch and afternoon classes can help stimulate saliva to buffer the acid and help dislodge food particles from the mouth. Gum containing the natural sweetener, Xylitol, is a particularly good option since studies have shown that consistent exposure to Xylitol can reduce cavity-causing bacteria in the mouth.

If children have braces, have them brush or rinse well with water after lunch. If they wear a removable retainer, they should clean it well after each meal and rinse their mouth.

Before the school year starts, schedule a dental visit to make sure there are no problems to distract a child during the school year. Ask the dentist about sealants as a way to protect children's teeth from cavities. Sealants – a thin coating of bonding material applied over the chewing surface of molar teeth – act as a barrier to cavity-causing bacteria.

About Delta Dental
Delta Dental of New Jersey Inc. is New Jersey’s leading dental benefits company, providing or administering coverage to more than 1.5 million people through contracts with employers in New Jersey and Connecticut. The Delta Dental system offers seamless dental benefits administration for employer groups throughout the country and has the largest network of dentists in the nation. For more information, visit www.deltadentalnj.com.

About Delta Dental of New Jersey Foundation
Delta Dental established the Delta Dental of New Jersey Foundation in 1986. Its mission includes promoting and assisting educational projects devoted to the enhancement of dental health, providing research programs designed to increase public awareness of the general benefits of good health, and improving dental health through the science of dentistry. Each year the foundation provides financial support to various organizations throughout the state.



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