The Truth about Gummy Vitamins and Your Teeth

Updated August 19, 2016

Nowadays it is difficult to make sure your child is getting a healthy, nutritious meal. With parents so busy and kids in so many activities, sometimes it is hard to make a home cooked meal. When you are at home, you have to rely on boxed or prepackaged foods, which are not always a healthy option. When you are away from home, unfortunately, you have to have the kids eat fast food. Of course, they like this option, but you do not.

The Truth about Gummy Vitamins

Image via Flickr by Pandies

So, how do you as a parent get them the nutrition they need when you are unable to cook them a healthy, hearty meal? One option is to give your kids supplements such as vitamins. Since no child likes to swallow pills, the best method on the market is gummy vitamins!

Gummy vitamins are quickly becoming the go-to solution for busy parents trying to coax some nutrition into their children. Unfortunately, the health benefits of these supplements have a darker side. Gummy vitamins may help provide some benefits your child isn't getting from his or her diet, but they're not the best option for a healthy smile or dental bills.

High Sugar Treats

One of the adverse effects of a gummy vitamin compared to a regular chewable vitamin or a multivitamin you swallow, is that they are packed with sugar.

Gummy vitamins, like gummy candy, are high in sugar. When compared to standard multivitamins, gummy vitamins have seven times as much sugar. They're a popular choice for their outstanding flavor, but this perk comes at a price. Gummy vitamins don't taste good because the vitamins themselves suddenly taste better. They're packed with flavoring and sweetness to make them palatable. Gummies also have four times as many calories per vitamin compared to a regular multivitamin.

If you are trying to keep your child eating low sugar or sugar-free foods, gummy vitamins may not be the best option for you. Another factor to consider is the fact that children nowadays get less exercise than their counterparts a decade ago. Diabetes is reaching all-time highs and children and more obese than ever. Parents need to be conscientious of all the sugar, and therefore calories, which their kids are eating. Just like spending, a little bit here and a little bit there add up very quickly!

The Sticky Truth

Though gummy vitamins are extremely high in sugar compared to regular vitamins, the sugar content in each tiny vitamin is still pretty small, especially when compared to gummy snacks that children eat by the bagful. Though you may not feel too bothered by the sugar content, there's something else you should consider.

Gummy vitamins have a sticky consistency that makes them stick in the teeth much longer than a standard chewable vitamin. For adults, a supplement that you can swallow is preferable to both options, because you don't grind it into your teeth at all. A gummy can stick on and in between the teeth all day, giving all that sugar plenty of time to start causing cavities.

If the child does not brush until bedtime, that sugar is just sitting in between their teeth for hours. It can be detrimental to their oral health as they can develop cavities in between their teeth where the sticky gummy has been residing. If this happens daily for weeks and months, cavities can form which will need to be filled by the dentist. No one, neither parent nor child, wants that to occur!

Better Alternatives

Vitamins are a great supplement for both children and adults. However, gummies simply aren't the best solution on the market. If you must go with something chewable, keep it powdery rather than sticky. Something with the sticky consistency like a gummy vitamin or even a chewable chocolate may stick in your teeth hours after you've consumed the vitamin. As soon as your children are comfortable swallowing pills, switch to a supplement they can simply swallow so you don't have to worry about tooth health at all with these products.

Although your kid may not like the less sugary option of a chewable vitamin tablet, it is much healthier for their teeth because there is no stickiness that resides after they have consumed the vitamin. The powder that is left in their mouth and on their tongue can be removed by taking a small drink of water after chewing the pill. Make sure to give your child the chewable vitamin at the same time each day to guarantee a routine is set. By doing so, your family members will be healthier as well as having great teeth and a beautiful smile!

Complete Tooth Care

Just as overall body health of your child is important to you as parents, so is the oral health of your children. You want to make sure your child is getting healthy and nutritious meals, but sometimes that is hard based on children and parents schedules. The best way to combat this lack of nutrition is through vitamins. While gummies can be a very viable and nutritious option for some, most parents feel they are not worth the risk of decaying teeth and cavities that can come along with eating a gummy vitamin daily. If you find yourself in this situation, make sure to purchase the vitamin that best works for your household.

Choosing the right vitamin is just the first step in a solid tooth care plan. Find a good dental provider for your children and make sure they see their dentist once every six months. Have your children brush and floss twice a day to keep that smile bright. Brushing should consist of one minute for the top teeth and another minute for the bottom.

If you absolutely can't kick the gummy vitamin habit, take the vitamin just before brushing in the morning or at night, so you can get rid of any lingering gumminess as soon as possible. Give your child a new toothbrush every three months for the best results.

Don't let the health benefits of gummy vitamins lure you into thinking they're safe. While they do have their bright side, you can choose a healthier option for your children. Beware the sticky side of these vitamins and keep your teeth safe from their dangers.

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