Try to make food choices as adventurous and varied as possible. All fruit and vegetables are packed full of different vital vitamins and minerals, try to offer a variety to ensure your child is getting all of the essential nutrients – eat a rainbow!

Try to limit your child's intake of sugary food/drink. The more often they have these foods the more likely they are to develop dental decay.

Tooth-friendly snacks

  • Raw vegetables (crudités) with a dip i.e. houmous
  • Fresh fruit i.e. a banana
  • Tinned fruit (in natural juice) with plain natural yoghurt
  • Pieces of cheese
  • Crackers/Breadsticks
  • Bread products with low fat spreads i.e. toast, pitta breads, crumpets
  • Plain popcorn
  • Sandwiches. Fillings could include: cheddar and celery, cream cheese and cucumber, tuna and sweetcorn, ham or chicken, houmous and grated carrots – be adventurous!

Drinks

Water and milk are the only drinks to have between meals! Fruit juices and smoothies may contain some vitamins but must only be drunk with a meal.

Rewards & Celebrations

Try not to offer sweets as rewards, instead try one of the following:

  • Praise – it's simple, free and it works!
  • Swap a chocolate bar with a story book/game – it will last longer.
  • Stickers – try having a wall chart and once they've collected so many stickers they can have a treat i.e. a book or have some 1-2-1 time with you!

Celebrations are often an excuse to over indulge with lots of sweet food and drinks, try some of the following ideas:

Easter

  • Try to encourage your child's creative streak by getting them to paint eggs (not just eat them!).

  • A treasure hunt is a great way to get children running around, but this doesn't need to involve hundreds of chocolate eggs - set clues/challenges for older children and have none edible prizes - it will challenge them more and keep them quiet for longer!

Birthdays

  • Look at some exciting things to put in party bags to replace the sweets or compensate by adding a toothbrush.