My kids love Halloween because it is one of those rare occasions mom and dad let them have free reign to eat themselves into a sugar coma with all the candy they get trick-or-treating. It’s a fun treat for them, but I worry about the long-term effects all that sugar has on their teeth.
There are ways to avoid Halloween tooth decay and two important things to keep in mind when eating all that sugary candy are to:
- Limit candy consumption and
- Shorten the amount of time sugar is present in the mouth
Parents can also protect their children’s teeth by following these tips:
- Go through you child’s candy BEFORE they dig in to make sure it meets your approval
- Have your child brush their teeth as soon as possible after eating candy. This lessens the chances for tooth decay.
- Sticky candy to avoid: Gummy bears, caramel and taffy. These types of candy can adhere to teeth and cause tooth decay.
- Take your child to visit the dentist BEFORE Halloween and have protective sealants put into the grooves of your child’s teeth.
If it is not possible to brush teeth immediately after candy consumption, try these helpful tips:
- Eat candy with a meal. The increased saliva production from chewing will help “wash” the sugar off teeth.
- Chew a sugarless gum (Gum with Xylitol is a good choice because Xylitol helps control the bacteria that cause tooth decay).
- Rinse mouth with water.
- Eat the candy quickly in one sitting to decrease the amount of time it is contact with the teeth. Avoid eating any candy slowly over an extended time or over multiple sittings. Recent studies have shown that length of time eating a sweet can be more harmful than the amount of sweet consumed.
- Avoid sugary sodas. They are loaded with sugar and are acidic enough to dissolve away tooth enamel.
No compensation was received for this blog post. Thanks to Mitchell Dental Spa for providing these excellent tips to help keep children’s teeth healthy this Halloween! All opinions expressed are 100% my own.