Did you know that strawberries have natural components in them that help keep teeth white and healthy? The astringent found in strawberries helps remove stains from the surface of teeth, and the high amount of vitamin C the berries have work to get rid of plaque. They can be eaten alone or used in a variety of recipes to promote good oral health between dental visits. Here are a couple of fun and tasty recipes your little one is sure to love:
Sweet Berry Juice Pops
This recipe is easy to make and tastes like a treat even though it only requires the use of three ingredients to make. Of course, you and your little one can create custom variations by adding sprigs of herbs, lemon juice, cinnamon, and other ingredients that appeal to your specific tastes and preferences. Here is what you'll need to make some basic sweet berry juice pops:
- 2 clean ice cube trays
- 24 tooth picks
- 6 fresh or frozen strawberries
- ¼ cup coconut milk
Put the strawberries and coconut milk in a blender then mix on high until well combined and creamy. Pour the creamy mixture into the ice cube trays and carefully place the toothpicks in each mold, so one end is sticking out of the mixture. Place the ice cube trays in the freezer and let them chill for at least 6 hours before enjoying.
Berry Minty Toothpaste
Another fun way to use strawberries for dental care is to turn it into toothpaste. Unlike most store-bought pastes, this one doesn't have any dangerous ingredients, so there is nothing to worry about if your child accidentally swallows a little while brushing. You'll need the following ingredients to make a batch of berry minty toothpaste:
- 2 strawberries (if using frozen berries, let them thaw first)
- 1 tsp hydrogen peroxide
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 10 drops peppermint essential oil
Use a fork to blend the strawberries and hydrogen peroxide together in a container until they become mushy. Then add the rest of the ingredients and slowly stir with a fork until the concoction turns into a paste. Use the toothpaste like you would commercial paste, but you should rinse with water afterward to get rid of any small seeds that might be lingering. Leftover toothpaste can be kept fresh in the fridge for about a week before you'll have to make a new batch.
These basic recipes should be fun for you and your child to make together and are sure to encourage healthy dental habits between visits to the dentist. For more information, contact a professional in dentistry, such as someone from Dentistry For Children & Adolescents.