School is just weeks away. Soon, we will be looking at school supply lists, organizing backpacks and getting back in our early morning routines. We’ll also be packing lunches and planning quick breakfasts to help get everyone out the door. We’ll be quick to ensure our kids get plenty of sleep and do their homework, but there’s another factor that may have just as much of an impact on your child’s education and daily success- nutrition.
Most people understand the link between good nutrition and their child’s growth and development. But, studies are showing us that good nutrition has far reaching effects, beyond just helping your child grow bigger and stronger. A child’s diet can directly impact their education. With better nutrition, students are better able to learn, miss fewer days of school and have less behavior issues, all of which can directly affect their self-esteem and confidence.
While we know that too much sugar can cause behavior problems in most children, studies are also showing that deficiencies in key nutrients can also have negative impacts on a child’s ability to process and learn new information. For example, iron deficiency has been shown to negatively impact cognition. Deficiencies in other vitamins, amino acids and minerals are shown to impair concentration and cognitive abilities.
It goes without saying that good nutrition can also directly impact your child’s oral health. Teeth need a healthy diet to remain strong and cavity free. Children with poor oral health and cavities tend to miss more school days, which can impact both their grades and their social development.
The results of poor nutrition can create a ripple effect in a child’s life, as any child experiencing poor educational outcomes or constantly getting in trouble for behavior issues will soon feel the stigma of being labeled as a trouble maker or a child that isn’t trying. In the same way, a child who has poor oral health due to a sugary diet or nutritional deficits, may become insecure in social settings, feel uncomfortable smiling and lose confidence.
Anderson Pediatric Dentistry wants every child to thrive. We know that a good education is the building block to success and that every child deserves the ability to be successful. We support the efforts of organizations in our community that are dedicated to making sure children are fed, such as United Way’s snack pack program, and also encourage parents and caregivers to ensure that their child is receiving adequate nutrition to help them reach their full potential.
Every child deserves Something to Smile About!
For more information on the power of good nutrition, this article below is a great start.