It’s that time of year already! With Halloween right around the corner I wanted to write a post on how to keep your kids teeth healthy with all the candy they will be consuming. And yours too because let’s face it, we all eat our kids candy. I probably look forward to Halloween just as much as my son! Even though we can’t control what sweet treats are given to them, we can control what they eat and when. There are also a few other things we can do to help keep those pearly whites healthy while still being able to enjoy their candy.
When it comes to the type of candy your kids eat, some are less harmful to the teeth than others. Plain chocolate is the least harmful candy to the teeth. It is easy to chew and melts in your mouth so it doesn’t sit on the teeth for a long time. There is not one specific sweet treat that is the most harmful to the teeth, there two major types. Any candy that is sticky, such as caramel and taffy, is very bad for the teeth. It sticks to the teeth during chewing and unless it’s removed, it stays there for a while after the piece of candy is consumed. When sugar sits on the teeth it weakens the enamel and causes cavities. The second type of harmful candy is hard candies. They are very tough on the teeth if they are chewed on, but generally people suck on hard candies. It takes a good amount of time to eat a piece of hard candy, the bigger the size, the longer it takes. Having a piece of hard candy means the teeth are exposed to damaging sugars for long periods of time, which causes an environment for bacteria to thrive and cavities to form. Not good!
There are ways you can help your kids teeth stay healthy while letting them enjoy their Halloween candy. Add a third or even fourth time brushing to the day. Your kids may not be thrilled about it, but they will thank you in the long run when they are cavity free. Even a quick brush is better than nothing. Make sure they are flossing or your helping them floss, even candy can get in between teeth. When you give your kids candy also give them a glass of water and try to make sure they drink it. The water will help wash away the harmful sugars and create a more alkaline environment. And no candy close to bedtime! If some sugars were missed during your children’s before bed brushing, it will sit on the teeth all night doing damage.
I know this is basic, but I hope it helps someone out. Add these few preventitive measures to your days after Halloween. Try and stick to chocolates and limit the amounts of sticky and hard candies. Now we can all enjoy Halloween and have kids with healthy teeth! Happy Halloween! 👻