Halloween is right around the corner and although some candy consumption is okay, there are ways to make Halloween a healthier holiday for your child’s teeth. Below, we share some items to avoid and practices to follow to have a Healthy and Happy Halloween:
- Avoid Sticky Candy (as much as possible)
- Minimizing the consumption of sticky candy can help your child from having food remain in his or her mouth for long periods of time. When this happens, sugar stays on the teeth and can be more likely to lead to decay or cavities. Sticky candy is also hard to brush away, so try and let your child enjoy a few pieces but not too many.
- Chew Sugar free Gum/Gum with the ADA Seal
- Halloween can become a candy and sweet free for all, but not all treats need to contain sugar. Sugar free gum comes in a bunch of great flavors that your child can enjoy without worrying about damaging teeth. Some of our favorite flavors are Trident Watermelon and Pineapple as well as Orbitz Bubblegum. Your child will still be able to blow bubbles and in fact, studies show that chewing sugarless gumfor 20 minutes after meals helps reduce tooth decay, because increased saliva flow helps wash out food and neutralize the acid produced by dental plaque bacteria.
- Avoid Beverages with Added Sugar
- With all the candy in your child’s possession, there is no reason to add fuel to the fire with sugary drinks like sodas and juices. Water should suffice this Halloween holiday, but if your child still asks for that sweet drink, look for sugar free options with flavor, like flavored waters or those you can mix in with water.
- Stay Away from Hard Candy (if you can)
- Hard candies hold with them some of the same issues as sticky candies – pieces containing sugar can stay on your child’s teeth for extended periods of time and lead to decay and cavities.
- Try to Eat the Candy with Meals and Toss it After a Week
- If your child is filled with healthy food at meals, they will be less included to consume candy throughout the day. After a week, quietly or confidentially call an end to treat time by tossing the candy.
Adapted from MouthHealthy.org
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