6 Tooth-Friendly Gifts For Your Favorite Little Valentines

Submitted by Bonnie C. Ferrell, DDS on February 13, 2018

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, which means treating the ones we love to gifts and treats to demonstrate our affection. Perhaps you have some little ones in mind while you are shopping for Valentine’s Day gifts—children (and grandchildren) are often the most wonderful valentines, after all. But before you reach for that giant, heart-shaped lollipop or the jumbo box of chocolates, you may want to consider gifts that don’t come with a week’s worth of sugar or sticky, cavity-triggering caramel inside. Here are six ideas for more smile-friendly gifts for you littlest valentines:

A Lunchbox Full of Love

When you make your child’s lunch on February 14th, use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to make sandwiches, cheese slices, and fruits extra-festive. Slide in a hand-written note on beautiful paper and a sheet of heart-shaped stickers to share around the table. This small gesture will brighten their day in an unexpected way.

The Gift of Your Time

Instead of a box of conversation hearts, give the gift of actual conversations with you. One great way to do this is to wrap a new card game or board game in decorative paper and present it to the child. When they open it, tell them you can’t wait to play the game with them! They will look forward to spending one-on-one time with you and getting to play a brand-new game together. What’s more, this gift lasts a lot longer than the candy would have and, truly, there is nothing more precious than the gift of our time.

Strew Clever Valentines Around the House

Buy several little action figures, or other small toys, and some index cards at the store. The night before Valentine’s Day, strew the toys in strategic places around the house with little notes on the index cards to go with them. For example, you could place a super hero action figure on their bathroom counter with a note that says “You’re Super, Valentine!” The cheesier the sentiment,the better. The child can collect their tiny treasures throughout the morning as they get ready for their day. The notes are sure to bring a smile to their faces while they discover each gift.

Get Creative With the Class Treats

If your child’s class is having a party, send a healthier contribution to the festivities. Children love cheese and crackers (bonus points if you use a heart-shaped cookie cutter on the cheese) or fruit trays. Take it up a notch by sending your child with a bouquet of “strawberry roses.” Simply fix strawberries onto green straws or popsicle sticks and place them in a vase or cup for carrying.

Surprise Them With an Experience

Instead of attaching a card to a box of chocolate, slip a note into the card that you’re going to take them to a movie they’ve been waiting to see forever, or a similar experience that they’d really love. Maybe they’ve been wanting to try ice skating or a paint-your-own-pottery class, or would love to go to the zoo or play laser tag with you. Once again, the gift of your time, and the memories made together, will last much longer than candy ever could (and spare their teeth the damage at the same time!)

Make It Personal

A small gesture can go a long way when it’s personal. If your child is a budding artist, a sketch pad or new brushes can make an excellent gift. Are they an avid sports fan? How about a new baseball cap or poster of their favorite team to hang on their wall? Taking the time to choose a heartfelt gift that reflects their interests and passions speaks volumes to a child. It’s easy to buy a box of candy for someone, but it takes effort to find the perfect book about appaloosas for a serious horse-enthusiast. You can also frame a picture of the two of you together for them to keep in their room, or give them something that reminds them of a fun time you had together recently.

There are so many ways to show love to the child in your life without reaching for the nearest red cellophane package at the grocery store. Not only are these gestures more meaningful and heartfelt, but they’re a lot healthier for growing teeth as well. If your child does enjoy some sweet treats (difficult to avoid at class parties) just be extra diligent about brushing and flossing as soon as they get home, and encourage them to drink plenty of water.

Dr. Bonnie Ferrell and her team wish you and your family a Happy Valentine’s Day!

To learn more about Dr. Ferrell or her office in the Lowry neighborhood of Denver, CO, visit http://www.drbonnieferrell.com/