October 22, 2019
Halloween is one of the most popular holidays in the country outside of Christmas and Thanksgiving. Not only do kids love to dress up and snack on candy throughout the month, but it seems adults are big fans of the practice as well! With that said, if you are a parent who’s children are very excited to hit the neighborhood for some free candy, it’s important that you keep their oral health in mind. With the right tips from a children’s dentist, you can help your child avoid cavities as they enter the new year.
Why Sticky Candies are the Worst Offenders
While it’s incredibly important to moderate your child’s consumption of candy, just like anything else containing sugar, there are some candies that are not worth allowing your children to eat at all. This includes very sticky candies like caramel or fruit snacks, both of which are far more likely to stay on the teeth for long periods of time. The longer they stay on teeth, the more time bacteria has to consume this food debris and produce plaque acids, which ultimately lead to cavities.
Sticking to standard chocolate is a much safer option as it can easily be removed from teeth. Once they’ve completed their trick-or-treating for the night, you’ll need to begin the screening process.
Screen Your Child’s Candy When You Get Home
As you go through your child’s candy bag, make sure that you remove the worst offenders. If you see any candy that is particularly sticky or chewy, such as gummies, licorice, caramel, taffy, and other varieties, remove it and donate it elsewhere. There are many non-profits and dental offices that take candy during Halloween. The same applies for very hard candies, which not only can crack a tooth but are designed to stay in the mouth for long periods of time.
Suggest Alternatives for Sticky Candy
Providing your child alternatives to candy is a great way to reduce their risk for developing cavities. In exchange for a certain number of chewy, sticky, or hard candies, provide them with fun alternatives such as:
- Microwave popcorn
- Cheese sticks
- Mini-glider airplanes (or other small toys)
- Non-toxic glow sticks
- Temporary tattoos
Schedule Them for a Routine Visit
Not only should you make sure that your child brushes their teeth and flosses after they’ve finished eating candy, you should also make sure that their next dental appointment has been scheduled. Routine exams and cleanings not only help you confirm your child’s current oral health, but give you a chance to determine if they need additional protection from cavities. If they need dental sealants to reduce their risk of cavities or a dental emergency appears, you’ll know exactly where you need to go.
Celebrating Halloween is fun, but it shouldn’t be enjoyed at the expense of your child’s oral health!
About On Point Dentistry
The dentists at On Point Dentistry work hard to help young patients get the dental care they need and create a warm and welcoming environment every time they visit. They’re also prepared to teach them the best ways to practice daily oral care and prevent the majority of dental cavities. To schedule an appointment or learn more about their practice, you can contact them through their website.
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