October 2, 2020
Now that Halloween is almost here, your family is putting together the finishing touches on their costumes and you’re getting ready to watch your favorite age appropriate scary movie. However, what would Halloween be with out having a few pieces of your favorite sweets? As great as it is to indulge in a sweet treat, your teeth won’t be thanking you. That’s why your dentist is sharing some Halloween candy tips so you and your family can enjoy the spooky season without needing to spend additional time in the dental chair getting fillings.
Choose Candy Carefully
Some sugary sweets are worse than others. A lot of the time, it depends on how long the candy is in your mouth. For instance, hard candies that you suck on for a long period of time tend to cause more damage than candies that are washed down quickly, like chocolate. Try to avoid hard candies and other sweets that say in your mouth for a long time.
Stay Away from Sticky
Sticky candies stick to your teeth. This means that it will take longer for it to be washed away by your saliva. Ultimately, having sticky candies increases your risk for tooth decay and other oral health issues. Put the taffy and gummy sweets to the side.
Time Your Candy Consumption
The best time to have Halloween candy is with a meal or shortly after one. This is because your saliva production increases when you have a meal. This helps to neutralize harmful acids produced by bacteria in the mouth and rinses away food debris.
Have a Plan
When buckets of candy are sitting around your home, it is hard to resist the temptation. The best thing you can do is come up with a plan beforehand on what to do with your family’s candy. For instance, you could have your kids pick out their favorite treats and donate the rest. Another option would be to store it in a place that isn’t in reach and distribute it out slowly over time. This way, the whole weekend won’t be full of added sugar.
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
Now more than ever, it is crucial that your family is maintaining a good oral hygiene routine. Remind your family of the importance of brushing their teeth at least twice a day with a fluoridated toothpaste. Flossing every day helps to remove food debris and plaque that your toothbrush cannot reach. This is the best way for you to prevent tooth decay and other oral health issues like gingivitis. Regular dental cleanings and checkups are also a necessary part of keeping up with the dental health of your family.
Instead of candy, a great alternative is sugar-free gum. You can find it in delicious fruity flavors, and it helps to stimulate saliva flow in the mouth without increasing your risk for tooth decay. This is a great thing to give to your kids instead of sugary sweets.
This Halloween, follow these tips to ensure you have a fun night while also keeping the smiles of your family safe!
About the Author
Dr. Ukti Phadnis earned her Doctor of Dental Medicine from the UConn School of Dental Medicine and has taken numerous continuing education courses to expand her knowledge in the field. She has completed advanced training focus on many aspects of the field. For more information on maintaining good oral health or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Phadnis at her office in West Hartford, visit her website or call (860) 236-4249.
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