Starting from the time they take their children to their first dentist appointment, most parents know how important it is for kids to brush their teeth twice a day and floss regularly to protect against tooth decay.
But what they don't know is that cavity protection is no longer enough. Today's modern diets - even those that are seemingly healthy - can contribute to acid erosion, a growing and irreversible problem not only among adults, but for children as well.
Acid erosion is loss of tooth enamel caused by acid acting on the tooth's surface, mainly from the consumption of acid-rich food and drinks like sodas, fruit juice, ketchup, salad dressings, citrus fruits and even fruits like melons and berries. Though nine out of 10 pediatric dentists report seeing signs of acid erosion in their patients, awareness among parents remains extremely low.
"Parents should be aware of the issue of acid erosion to ensure that they take steps to minimize the risk to their children's teeth," says nationally recognized pediatric dentist and diplomat for the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry, Dr. Jessica Meeske. "The popular adage is that it's best to brush after every meal; however, children should avoid brushing teeth immediately after consuming acidic food or drinks as this is when the enamel is at its softest. Parents can also give their children a foundation for acid wear protection by having them brush twice daily with Sensodyne ProNamel for Children, a new over-the-counter pediatric toothpaste that can help re-harden softened enamel."
According to a recent survey conducted by Sensodyne ProNamel, most mothers - 93 percent - don't think their children are at risk for acid erosion of teeth, and almost half of moms said they are not sure if acid erosion of a child's teeth can be repaired or reversed, when, in fact, it can't. Once enamel is gone, it's gone for good.
In response to the growing issue of acid erosion, Sensodyne, a leader in tooth enamel protection, has introduced Sensodyne ProNamel for Children, the first pediatric toothpaste designed to help re-harden children's tooth enamel. It was developed specifically to protect tooth enamel, as it is specially formulated to help protect against acid erosion as well as cavities. Its optimized fluoride formula allows for greater fluoride uptake to help re-harden and strengthen softened enamel. Furthermore, its low abrasivity helps avoid further enamel wear during toothbrushing and it is pH neutral. Developed with the help of dentists, ProNamel for Children also has a kid-friendly gentle mint flavor that helps make twice daily brushing easier.
Dr. Meeske also adds that parents should not necessarily discourage children from consuming healthy foods and beverages that are acidic. "Foods like apples, oranges and yogurt are an essential part of a healthy, balanced diet and a good source of many nutrients," she says. "Instead of avoiding serving these, parents need to better understand what simple things they can do to help protect their children from the damaging effects of acid wear."
Sensodyne ProNamel for Children will be available nationwide at drug, grocery and mass merchandise stores in March. For more information about the product and acid erosion, visit www.ProNamel.us.