Halloween is right around the corner and your little ghosts, goblins and princesses can’t wait for the day!
However, for parents, Halloween presents dental health challenges. To get your child – and you – through the temptations of Halloween candy, it helps to have a plan. Here are our top 5 tips for healthy Halloween fun:
- Choose candy and snacks wisely. The length of time that sugary food is in your mouth matters when it comes to tooth decay. Avoid sticky candies like taffy and gummy bears that take longer to get washed away. Don’t consume or give out hard candy – the whole time that it’s dissolving in the mouth, your teeth are exposed to sugar.
- Don’t add more sugar with sweet beverages. Drink water to rinse the mouth and stay hydrated. When choosing bottled water, look for fluoridated brands.
- Try to eat Halloween candy with meals. Saliva production increases during meal time and can help cancel out the acids produced by mouth bacteria, and can also rinse away food particles.
- Consider sugarless gum instead of candy. Chewing sugarless gum with the ADA seal for 20 minutes after meals neutralizes acid and increases the flow of saliva to help reduce tooth decay.
- Limit candy snacking. Let your child enjoy goodies immediately after trick-or-treating, then secure the rest. Explain to your child how sugary snacks like candy can harm the teeth. Don’t prohibit candy completely – a better idea is to let your child enjoy candy as a snack once a day, either with a meal or followed by brushing. Smart parents use snacking as part of the child’s overall nutrition and include healthy choices like yogurt, cheese, peanut butter, vegetables and chocolate milk.
Let Us Know If You Have Questions on Any Aspect of Oral Health Care
Dr. Lorraine Burio of Candlewood Dental Care has been treating and educating patients for over twenty-five years. Our office serves the New Fairfield, New Milford, Danbury, and Sherman areas of CT and Pawling, Patterson and Putnam Lake of New York. You can call us at 203-746-1200 or make an appointment here.