I have a confession. The minis are 3 and 1 already, but I have never taken them to a dentist for a dental checkup. I have always thought that as long as I brush their teeth after every meal, they will be fine. That changed after attending a talk on oral hygiene and care organized by Lotte Xylitol–and I was shocked to know that I have been doing a couple of things wrong.
Dr. Fina Lopez, a pediatric dentist who is on a mission to spread awareness about proper oral care for kids, shared with us facts about oral hygiene and how we can fight tooth decay early on so we can protect our children from conditions that result from it, such as periodontal disease and heart disease.
What are the effects of tooth decay on children?
- Difficulty in eating
- Irritability/Sleepless nights
- Permanent teeth can be contaminated with tooth decay and may result to softer enamel
As a result, children suffering from tooth decay might have increased absences in school and some may even experience negative emotional effects. Worst, in some cases, oral infection may lead to death.
What can parents do to prevent tooth decay?
- Take your child to a pediatric dentist every six months as soon as his/her first tooth breaks out.
- Brush day and night for two minutes using a fluoridated toothpaste. You read that right, moms and dads! According to Dr. Fina Lopez, brushing your child’s teeth with non-fluoridated toothpaste is like brushing with water. It will not help fight tooth decay at all. If you are worried about what we have been told that fluoride can poison children- well, that is not fully true. The truth is, fluoride can only be harmful if the child consumes half of an adult-sized tube of toothpaste in one sitting (Safety Note: Keep those tubes away from children’s reach!). All you need is a small smear on your child’s toothbrush and that’s it!
- No water rinsing (“mumog”) after brushing. Just let your child spit out the excess toothpaste. This keeps the fluoride on the teeth longer, making it more effective.
- Change everyone’s toothbrush every 3 months.
- Eat a balanced diet!
- Limit snacking since frequent eating can cause several acid attacks.
Parents are encouraged to practice oral hygiene as well. If proper oral hygiene is not practiced by parents, the bacteria they carry in their mouths can be transmitted to their children–through sharing food or kissing. The effects of this bacteria may not show on your child’s teeth right away, but it is silently waiting to strike as soon as it is given a chance.
Aside from brushing your teeth and flossing, everyone 6 years old and above are suggested to have daily intake of xylitol, a 100% natural sweetener with dental health properties. It is almost as sweet as sugar, but has 40% less calories. It can be found in birch trees, berries, and some vegetables. Xylitol is non-cariogenic, hence it does not cause tooth decay. Rather, it helps stop the development of tooth decay and reduces dental plaque formation. Moreover, it enhances re-mineralization of teeth.
Make It Zero with Lotte Xylitol
I have heard about Lotte Xylitol before, but I have always thought that it is just like any other breath-freshening gum in the market. However, keeping your breath fresh is not the only thing it does:
Lotte Xylitol Gum is a dental health gum that uses more than 50% xylitol as a natural sugar substitute. Its main ingredient, Xylitol, helps fight tooth decay, reduces dental plaque formation, and enhances re-mineralization. It also contains Calcium Phospates that help rebuild teeth.
Lotte Xylitol comes in three flavors: Fresh Mint, Lime Mint, and Blueberry Mint (my favorite!). You can buy it in three sizes: Blister Packs as well as the Mini Bottles and Handy Bottles (photographed above). The recommended intake is 2 pellets, 4-5 times a day.
The bonus? The Lotte Xylitol meetup happened on my birthday- so aside from learning more about dental care, I got to celebrate my birthday with other mom bloggers! I was not able to take photos of the food served by Kitchen’s Best Home Patisserie (yummy!) because I was busy listening to Dr. Fina’s talk (I am really not cut out to be a food blogger! LOL). But at least we got a chance to take photos after talk:
The chocolate cake is my favorite! I have been craving for a slice since July started and have been bugging Arjay to buy me a whole cake for my birthday. To my delight, a slice was served after Dr. Fina’s talk. Thankfully, we had a bag of Lotte Xylitol to the rescue! :D
By the way, Lotte Xylitol is currently having the contest, Lotte Xylitol Smile Champions. All you need to do is submit a photo of you and your child showing off your beautiful smiles.
Three pairs will win:
- Their own ‘shining moment’ and be featured in Lotte Xylitol’s Facebook fan page
- The parent and child will have their own photoshoot, complete with styling, hair, and makeup
- From September to November, there will be a featured pair and they will be part of the brand page’s content
- All winners will also receive 10,000 pesos in cash and Lotte Xylitol Gum gift pack worth 1,000
This is only open to parents with children 5-12 years old. For more information, visit their Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/lottexylitolgum. Promo runs from July 25, 2014 to August 22, 2014.