Monthly Archives: November 2014

Bedtime Routine Chart

Sometimes after a long day of working, running errands and taking care of household needs, the bedtime routine can be exhausting. By adding a bedtime routine chart into your nighttime ritual, you can experience more success with tasks getting completed without an argument.

There are different ways to customize  a bedtime routine chart to suit your needs. Parents with multiple children will want to add different columns for each child to check off their chores as they complete them. At the end of each month, if all chores were completed, parents can choose to do a special activity or have a fun treat to keep things exciting.

To keep things interesting, try mixing up the chores every few weeks to keep the chart fresh and new.

Below is an example of a blog I found on

The post includes a printable chore chart if you don’t want to make your own. Just make sure to add brushing AND flossing as part of the routine as flossing is so often overlooked. If you start adding that in at a young age the habit will be more likely to be carried over to adulthood.

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Books to Read Before the First Dental Visit

Many children experience anxiety during their first trip to the dentist. This anxiety can be transferred from parent to child and we often see parents who are more nervous than the child.

To help ease some of this anxiety and help prepare for the first visit to the dentist try reading dental children’s books at bedtime for a few weeks before. I have not found one children’s book that perfectly illustrates the experience, but there are so many to choose from that it is easy to find the right one for your child.

Here is a list of my favorites:

1.) “The Berenstain Bear’s Visit the Dentist,” by Stan and Jan Berenstainberenstain Bears

2.) “Just Going to the Dentist,” by Mercer Mayer

little critters

3.) “Elmo Visits the Dentist,” by P.J Shaw                                                      elmo

4.) “I Love Going to the Dentist!” by Lynda Hudson

I love going

5.) “Dancing Daisy Goes to the Dentist,” by Deborah Bradley daisy

6.) “Does a Tiger Open Wide?” by Fred Ehrlich


7.) “The Tooth Book,” by Dr. Seuss

Dr. Seuss

8.) “Going to the Dentist,” by Stephen Cartwright

going to the dentist

9.) “What to Expect when you go to the Dentist,” by Heidi Murkoff What-to-Expect-When-You-Go-to-the-Dentist-Murkoff-Heidi-9780694013289(1)

10.) “Show me your Smile: A Visit to the Dentist,” by Christine RicciDora


Adding a few of these books into the bedtime routine before their first visit can help to make them excited about the experience. Be careful not to accidentally let your own dental anxiety sneak into the conversation and leave questions up to us. We love making the dental visit fun for the kids by using kid friendly words and terms throughout the appointment. By avoiding words such as, “hurt” “scared” “shot” “needle,” you can help us be more successful with your child and they’ll love coming back to see us each time!


Apple Nachos!


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Parents are superheroes-running around to activities, school drop-off and pickup, making meals, cleaning house and everything in between. It can be hard to think of creative ways to encourage your child to eat more fruits and veggies.

Often in between all of these errands, kids are hungry and asking for a snack. Parents tend to grab carbohydrates such as chips, crackers, and goldfish. As mentioned in previous blog posts, these are not teeth friendly options. The simple carbohydrates break down into sugars on the teeth and cause decay.

What I hear often at the office are parents, in exasperated tones, saying that their child is picky and won’t eat much besides carbohydrates. To encourage them to try new things and open them up to choose healthier options, try setting aside some time to make snack time fun!

Here’s a recipe that I LOVED! “Apple Nachos.”

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1-2 apples of your choice

Almond butter, peanut butter or sun butter. Preferably choose the option with the lowest sugar. The almond butter I used had 3g of sugar per 2TBSP

Almonds, peanuts, raisins, cinnamon – anything to dress up your nachos and make them kid friendly!



Slice the apples to about 1/4″-1/2″ thickness and arrange on a platter


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Melt the topping of your choice on the stove or in the microwave so it can be easily drizzled onto the apples

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Use a spoon to drizzle over the apples

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Decorate and enjoy!

How to get rid of that Halloween Candy!

Halloween Candy: A cavity’s best friend!

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Halloween is over, but unfortunately so is the warmer weather of early fall. Now that the costumes, holiday and school parties are done, you are more than likely left with an excessive amount of sugary loot.

It can be difficult to convince your child to release the candy goodness and save their body and teeth, but here are a few suggestions that may help you win the battle.

Get your kids involved and make it fun. Try making a wreath out of candy or having a contest of who can build the best statue! To combine education and candy reduction, set up a science experiment in your kitchen.

There are a number of different experiments to try, but here are a few of my favorites.

The Acid Test:

Fruit-flavored candy is full of acid! Sour Patch Kids, Skittles, and Starbursts are a few of the culprits more than likely present in your child’s Halloween candy. With a little water and some baking soda you can test the candy to see if it has acid.

Add a ¼ cup of water to a measuring cup, add in your candy of choice and sprinkle baking soda on top. If the mixture bubbles the candy has acid in it.

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M&M Test:

M&M’s have a dissolvable candy shell. Make a tie-dye, rainbow project with a plate of warm water and M&M’s. Add the candy to the warm water and watch the color dissolve off the candy leaving behind a rainbow in the water.

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You can also try the sink or float test by adding various candy to small containers of water to see if they float to the top or sink to the bottom.

Some parents may choose a different tradition to reduce the amount of sugar intake this time of year. The Switch Witch will come at night and replace the pile of candy left on the table with a toy for the child. This is a fun tradition to start and it will help reduce the sugar craving that will follow an excessive amount of sugar consumption.

Look through these options and decide what is going to be the most successful for you and your family. It is a common misconception that by eating the candy slow and steady is better than all at once, but when it comes to the health of your child’s teeth, this is not the case.

Sugar + Acid + Time= Decay. The math is that simple. If your child consumes just a piece with lunch every day until the candy is gone, the sugar is going to be reintroduced to their teeth and increase the risk for decay. It is better, although it sounds absurd, to let your child eat more candy at once and then get rid of the rest. Although it’s more sugar and acid, it is only one frequency, thus reducing their risk of cavities.


Good luck and please share what methods worked best for you!