With Teachers Day this month, kids and parents are looking for fun ways to show appreciation for their teachers. Home-baked goodies and special treats are always welcome to hard working teachers. Keep your teacher smiling happily while also getting a gold star from your dentist with Loock Dental’s tips for healthy, tooth-kind treats.
- Look for alternatives to sugar in sweet treats: Sweet is not the only option, but it’s naturally very popular when your teacher needs that little pick-me-up. Sugar is trouble for your teeth though, so try looking for refined sugar-free treats and baking recipes. There are so many options that use natural, healthy sugar substitutes like xylitol. Xylitol is available in crystal form to use just like sugar in cooking, and has been shown to actually boost dental health. Just remember that fruit sugars and acids might seem healthier in general, but are still harmful to your teeth enamel, so avoid too many dried fruits or dates in the mix. (For more on why, take a look at our post on diet and healthy teeth). Here’s a great tip: go for good quality dark chocolate. It’s lower in sugar and fat, and makes a sophisticated and special gift.
- Consider non-sweet treats: biltong, roasted nuts, savoury muffins, flavoured olive oils, even artisanal cheeses – all these things could make a welcome change from the usual treats and might even be more popular with your teacher! Package them attractively in a pretty box, bottle or packet and watch your teacher smile! Eating snacks like harder cheeses (e.g. cheddar) has even been shown to improve your oral hygiene! Steer away from chutneys or pickles, which tend to have both very acidic vinegar and lots of sugar, neither of which are good friends to teeth enamel. Top tip: check whether or not your teacher eats meat and dairy products or if he or she has a nut allergy.
- Try delicious and healthy herbal teas: Handing your teacher a hug-in-a-mug hot chocolate packaged prettily in a nice mug might seem fabulous but it isn’t a tooth-friendly option. Healthy energy-boosters and stress-relievers, herbal teas can make a great alternative to sugary hot chocolate, or coffee and tea, which stain teeth. You can come up with fun ideas for instruction labels: “Camomile tea for calming down after maths class with (insert name here)” or “Mint tea for when you need to stay up late marking but still want to sleep at some point.” For bonus marks, you could add a little bottle of essential oil such as lemon or orange oil, which can be added to tea a few drops at a time. Ask your essential oil stockist for the best options.
- Make up a pretty fruit basket: The apple is the traditional teacher gift, after all! Find a mix of different coloured fruits in season, and put them in a pretty fruit bowl or basket that the teacher can use once the delicious fruit is finished. This can be especially welcome to a teacher with a family of his or her own whose teeth they want to keep healthy. This way, they don’t have to go home with lots of sweeties to share with their children!
Let us know in the comments if you have even more tips for Loock Dental for keeping your special teachers smiling, and if you have some fun message ideas to go with your happy, healthy teacher treats!