Nothing says the holiday season like a lineup of stockings hung by a fire, but what you put in those stockings can require a little bit of thought. The most common stocking stuffers—gummy, sticky, and hard candies—can cause serious damage to your and your family’s teeth. If you’re looking for a way to fill your children’s stockings without causing your dentist headaches, here are a few tooth-healthy stocking stuffer ideas to help your kids prevent oral health problems.
Your kids brush their teeth twice a day, every day (at least hopefully). While it might not have the same allure as toys and candy, they’re sure to appreciate a gift that can make their daily chores more fun.
Electric toothbrushes have been clinically proven to outperform analog toothbrushes. They also have features that can make brushing exciting for younger kids. Some kids have a hard time brushing for the necessary two minutes, so there are brushes that will play a song for that amount of time. There are even brushes that connect to apps on their phone that turn brushing into a game!
Your kids might be missing caramel and toffee in their stockings, but there are plenty of tooth-healthy treats that they can enjoy over the holidays. Dried fruits, for example, tend to be softer and contain less sugar than traditional holiday candies. Chocolate is another treat that’s not quite as bad for kids’ teeth; their sugar melts away quickly, as opposed to caramels and hard candies that are likely to linger for a while afterward.
Flavored Dental Hygiene Products
Speaking of tasty gifts, there’s another brushing-related problem that might be worth dealing with: the flavor of most dental products. Many kids want to take care of their teeth but aren’t the biggest fan of mint—that’s why there is a myriad of dental products designed for kids that are much more appetizing to them. Peppermint is a classic holiday flavor, but your child might like bubblegum or watermelon toothpaste in their stocking instead.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to fill a stocking with tooth-healthy gifts. Keep these ideas in mind, and you should be able to enjoy the festivities while protecting your kids’ teeth.
About the Author
Dr. Mo Saleh is a dentist who wants to change the way people feel about oral healthcare. He comes to work every day motivated to offer the highest quality dental care, alongside an incredible chairside manner. Dr. Saleh is a graduate of the Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, and he’s a proud member of both the American Dental Association and the Ohio Dental Association. If you have any questions about taking care of your teeth over the holiday season, he can be reached at his website or by phone at (440) 546-9494.