Do you have a Sugar Bandit in your family?
Is there someone who, despite all your efforts to give your kids a healthy diet, slips them junk food when you’re not looking? Or sometimes even when you are?
Do your kids have a well-meaning nanna who loves to spoil them with ice-creams, a great-grandfather who keeps lollies in his pocket or a favourite auntie who offers them chocolate every time they fall over and hurt themselves? Do they fall over a lot more than usual when she visits?
There’s a Sugar Bandit in most families and they certainly don’t mean any harm – in fact, quite the opposite. They love your children and they love to see them happy!
But, are they literally spoiling them rotten?
This Dental Health Week (August 4-10), the Australian Dental Association wants you to dob in your family’s Sugar Bandit.
It’s a tongue-in-cheek campaign but there’s a serious message behind it.
The reality is that almost 50 per cent of Aussie children under six have tooth decay, a disease that can result in pain, the removal of teeth, bad breath and a host of other problems.
It is a disease that can be prevented by brushing and flossing, eating a balanced diet and making sure sugary treats are not eaten too frequently.
And while a growing number of Aussie parents are making better choices for their children – it is the other people in their lives who are still contributing to the problem, teaching them that junk food is a reward or can make you feel better when you’re hurting.
How about a hug instead? It won’t rot your teeth!