Sugary Drinks Cause BIG Problems for Little Kids

dentist and soda pop new yorkSugary drinks are bad news for teeth and are linked not only to weight gain, but also to poor diets, poor health and tooth decay in children. Sugar is a known cause of cavities, providing “food” for bacteria that promote tooth decay. Moreover, the acidity in carbonated drinks exacerbates the problem, as it can cause erosion of tooth enamel after as little as one sip.

Tooth decay is the most chronic childhood illness in the United States! Beverage choices matter from birth. For optimal health and growth, there is no better food than breast milk for a baby’s first 6 months of life, then continuing as long as the mother and child desire, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Plain water (unless advised otherwise by a pediatrician) low-fat 1% or nonfat milk is the most appropriate beverages for healthy children older than two. Infants under 6 months old should not be given juice at all. From 6 months to 6 years of age, a child’s intake of fruit juice should be limited to 4 to 6 ounces per day.

Some pediatricians even recommend diluting the juice with water. Never let your child fall asleep with a bottle in their mouth if the bottle contains milk or juice because it will cause rampant decay!

Common sugary drinks are regular (non-Diet) sodas, sports drinks, bottled teas, fruit drinks, juice cocktails, vitamin fortified juice drinks, vitamin waters and energy drinks. These beverages are full of empty calories in the form of added sugars and provide little to no essential nutrients.

Learning habits start early and are difficult to undo as children grow. So try not to introduce these sugary drinks to your children and promote healthy eating and drinking!

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