It’s that time of year again. Halloween is right around the corner and that means Halloween parties, trick-or-treating, and plenty of candy! Unfortunately, all of that sugar can wreak havoc on your children’s teeth. The more sugar they eat and the longer it sits on their teeth between brushing and flossing, the more chance they have at developing cavities. But, before you cancel Halloween altogether and get nominated for the worst parent award, there are some things you can do to minimize the damage.
In today’s blog from James Mellert DDS and Associates, we’re going to give you some tips on how to keep your teeth healthy this Halloween. Keep reading, and if you’re looking for a Torrance dentist, give us a call to make an appointment.
Know the Best (and Worst) Options
Not all candy is created equal. Some candy such as caramels, taffy, and other sticky types can stick to teeth and pull out fillings. Hard candies slowly melt in your mouth, allowing the sugar to remain in contact with your teeth longer. Sour candies are also a no-no as they are very acidic and can damage the enamel on your teeth. So, what’s the best option? Chocolate candy is probably the best option since the chocolate isn’t as acidic and washes off your teeth better than other kinds of candy.
Don’t Graze on Candy All Day
The longer sugar is allowed to sit on your teeth, the more bacteria can grow — and the by-products produced by this bacteria is what causes your teeth to decay. Don’t let bacteria take over by feeding them sugar all day. Instead, only eat candy at designated times (preferably with a meal) to reduce the amount of potential damage.
Drink Plenty of Water
Drinking water is important for many reasons — and one of those reasons is that it helps to wash away the sugar on our teeth. If you or your child is going to eat a piece of candy, make a habit of washing it down with a glass of water. Your teeth will thank you.
Be Diligent About Brushing and Flossing
Halloween and the days following is a time of increased candy consumption. And, although it’s always important to brush and floss your teeth, it’s particularly important during this time. Don’t let your children go to bed without ensuring that they’ve thoroughly brushed and flossed. Although brushing several times throughout the day is not normally suggested, if they eat some candy after lunch, for example, it would be a good idea to add an additional brushing and flossing to their daily routine.
If your child comes home with a bag of candy that resembles a 50-lb sack of potatoes, you might want to consider setting some limits. First, determine how much candy they are allowed to eat per day. Then establish a cut-off date for getting rid of/giving away any that remains. Another way to do this is to have your child pick out only their favorites and get rid of the rest. That way, they aren’t consuming a pound of candy every day until Easter.
Schedule a Teeth Cleaning With Your Torrance Dentist
After Halloween but before the December holidays is a great time to schedule a professional teeth cleaning. If you’re looking for a Torrance dentist who offers comprehensive dental services including children’s dental care, cosmetic treatments, and emergency care, contact James W. Mellert to schedule an appointment.