With Halloween around the corner, children everywhere are looking forward to all of the candy and sweet treats that are surely headed their way. Parents and dentists, however, are a little less enthusiastic about the holiday, and what it may mean for children’s teeth.
At Ramona Family Dentistry, Dr. Sean Feely encourages all of his patients, from youngest to oldest, to enjoy Halloween — without neglecting their pearly whites! Here, he shares his top dental tips to help keep you and your child’s teeth healthy through Halloween and beyond.
Eat This, Not That
Certain candies are less harmful to teeth than others. Sticky, hard and sour candies should be avoided as much as possible. Chocolates are a better option because they are less likely to stick to the teeth and they wash away easier than hard and sticky candy. Sugarless gum is also a great alternative. According to the American Dental Association, chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes increases saliva production and helps neutralize acids produced by bacteria that can lead to tooth decay.
Eat Candy Shortly After Mealtime
Eating candy with or right after a meal makes it less tempting for children to gorge on candy later on in the night. In addition, saliva production increases during meals, which helps wash from the mouth acids left behind by candy.
Avoid Sugary Beverages
Limit your child’s sugar intake on Halloween night by avoiding sugary beverages, including soda, sports drinks and flavored waters. Make sure your child drinks plenty of water (preferably fluoridated water) in between eating candy.
Enjoy Candy in Moderation
Have your child choose a handful of their favorite candy and then put away the rest for another day.
Brush and Floss after Trick-or-treating
Brushing and flossing teeth is doubly important on Halloween night. Your child should brush their teeth for two minutes and floss between teeth to get all of the particles and food that a toothbrush can’t reach. For added protection, have them rinse their mouth with a fluoridated mouth wash.
To learn more dental tips for a happier and healthier mouth, schedule a consultation with Dr. Nathan Christensen, D.D.S. and Dr. Hemant Sachdeva D.D.S. of Ramona Family Dentistry. Contact us by calling (760) 789-0170 or emailing our office today.