Bust out the pens and pencils and crack open those books – its fall and the kids are back in school in Nashville!


With endless costs and piles of paperwork, the last thing busy parents want to think about for back to school is packing lunches. However, with the most common chronic childhood disease being tooth decay and 51 million school hours lost yearly due to dental-related illnesses, we need to consider what we’re feeding our kids when the lunchtime bell chimes. Our experts here at Belle Meade Family Dentistry are here to help.


As always, a balanced diet is a critical element of dental health, so think about your child’s teeth when packing the brown bag. Here are some healthy foods to consider:


  • Sandwiches made with whole grain bread and packed with protein-rich foods like chicken or turkey help teeth build enamel.
  • Veggies like celery and carrots can act like a toothbrush by massaging gums and helping to eliminate bad bacteria.
  • Apples help stimulate the production of saliva, which, in turn, helps reduce tooth decay by lowering bacteria.
  • Bananas are packed with vitamins, minerals and potassium – all helpful for a healthy mouth.
  • Cut-up watermelon is full of gum-supporting Vitamin C.
  • Oranges help control acidity levels in your mouth.
  • Strawberries act as a natural tooth whitener, complete with an astringent and vitamin C, making them a great treat for your smile.
  • Calcium-rich foods like low-fat milk, yogurt and string cheese keep teeth and the jaw bone strong and protected against tooth decay.
  • Hard-boiled eggs and tuna fish aid in the absorption of calcium and protein.


All of these items are easy, delicious and best of all –healthy!


Brushing after a meal is recommended but isn’t always possible at school. In lieu of brushing, ask your child to rinse their mouth with water for a minute after eating to help loosen any food that may be stuck in the teeth.


We wish all of our patients a school year full of knowledge (and lots of smiles)!


Have questions about your child’s teeth? Call to schedule an appointment with us!


For more information on how to choose mouth healthy foods for your children, call Nashville’s own Belle Meade Family Dentistry at (615) 298-2030. You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.