Babies’ teeth begin developing in the womb between the third and sixth months of pregnancy. While nutrition during pregnancy is important for all forms of healthy fetal development, it’s important for the development of healthy teeth as well. To support healthy teeth in your baby, there are certain foods you should eat and some you should avoid.
Dairy foods like milk, yogurt, cheese, and cottage cheese have both protein and calcium, which support strong teeth for both you and your baby. If you are lactose-intolerant or allergic to dairy finding dairy substitutes that are high in protein and calcium or taking a (doctor-approved) calcium supplement can make up for the lack of dairy in your diet.
Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins and minerals that can help baby grow and develop and keep mom healthy as well. Additionally, vegetables like broccoli, asparagus, lettuce, spinach and fruits like papaya, oranges, cantaloupe, bananas, and strawberries contain folic acid, a vital nutrient for reducing the risk of birth defects.
Fluoride protects tooth enamel, and water is the best hydrator out there. Either drink fluoridated water from a municipal source or well, or, if you prefer bottled water, ensure that the kind you buy contains fluoride.
Foods with lots of sugar like candies and baked goods—among other things, there’s sugar in almost any processed food you can buy—are just as bad for baby’s teeth as they are for yours. Remember, what you eat, the baby eats.
Juice, sports drinks, fruit drinks, and sodas are all extremely high in sugar, which is bad for your teeth and baby’s. Drink water or milk instead.