Sugar is Scary: Dental Tips for a Healthy Halloween
It’s nearly Halloween, and there is no doubt that those candy buckets will get filled to the brim with tempting sweet treats. As a parent, it can be challenging to find a balance between letting your children indulge in Halloween fun and keeping their teeth strong. However, there are a few ways that you can enjoy Halloween candy and still keep your teeth healthy.
Why is Sugar so Scary?
It is no secret that sugar is bad for your teeth. Cavity causing bacteria feed on sugar, and the more sugar you give them, the more the bacteria multiply. When you provide the bad bacteria sugar, they form dental plaque on the surface of the teeth. If this is not cleaned off your teeth, it can dissolve the tooth enamel and lead to cavities. Also, these harmful bacteria don’t just cause cavities but can damage your gums.
How to Safely Enjoy Spooky Sweets
To try and avoid sugar overload. Follow these top tips to help your teeth stay healthy on Halloween.
- Make Good Candy Choices. Hard candy takes a long time to eat, and the longer that sugar is in your mouth, the higher the risk of tooth decay. Try to avoid the long-lasting hard candies and lollipops that will spend more time in your mouth and opt for some chocolate instead.
- Stay Away from Sticky Sweets. Popcorn balls, caramels, and sticky candy can get stuck in your teeth and take a lot longer to get washed away by saliva or water. This increases your risk of tooth decay.
- Enjoy Treats at the Right Times. Snacking on candy outside of mealtimes is not good for your teeth or your physical health. Try to eat candy with meals, as a dessert, or as close mealtimes as possible. When eating a meal, the saliva produced will help reduce the acid in your mouth, reducing your risk of plaque sticking to the teeth.
- Pick Your Favorites and Donate the Rest. There will undoubtedly be too much candy to know what to do with, and it can be tempting to snack on it if it is left in the cupboard. So, why not indulge in your favorites but bring some joy to other people too.
There are many charities where you can donate unopened Halloween candy, including:
- Ronald Macdonald House Charities – Contact your local chapter to see if they are accepting candy donations.
- Operation Gratitude
- Soldiers’ Angels
- Operation Stars and Stripes
- Operation Shoebox
By donating some of your candy, you get to enjoy your favorite sweets and pass the rest on to bring a smile to others.
Halloween is a fun time to enjoy, and there is no reason you can’t have a few sweet treats and still keep your teeth healthy. Just remember to keep up with your regular dental hygiene regime to keep your teeth clean and strong.