Halloween, a holiday centered around candy, is just a week away! And while this holiday can be a lot of fun, it can also be a bit frightening. The scariest thing of all is all the candy you'll be eating. Candy and other sugary treats are the worst for your teeth. They can lead to tooth decay and cavities. Here are some Halloween tips to protect your child's teeth and still enjoy the holiday.
Hard candies like lollipops, jawbreakers, and any candy that stays in the mouth for a long time can be harmful to your child's teeth. They put a lot of pressure on their teeth's enamel, which can wear it down over time. The sugar in hard candies can also feed plaque bacteria in the mouth and lead to tooth decay.
Sticky or chewy candies can get stuck between teeth, causing damage to tooth enamel. This is because such candies do not dissolve when exposed to saliva but stay intact for hours - leaving their mouth full of sugar and acid for long periods of time. These candies are also hard for the teeth to break down, making them difficult to chew.
Dark chocolate is a good option because dark chocolate has a ton of antioxidants in it, which is not only good for your child's overall health but can help protect their teeth as well. However, you should still try to brush or rinse your mouth out after consuming sour candies.
Remember that moderation is the key to ensuring that your child maintains good oral health while still enjoying some of their favorite treats!
It's important to brush your child's teeth after eating Halloween candy. The bacteria that collect on their teeth from sugary snacks will feed on the sugars for hours after they have eaten them, so brushing the teeth immediately after a meal can help rinse away the sugars. Make sure the child brushes for two full minutes, and don't forget to floss as well!
You can also ask your child to use chewing gum or a mouthwash that contains fluoride to help fight cavities and gum disease. These preventative options will help keep the bacteria from acting on sugar in their mouth.
Sticky candies can get stuck in the teeth, making them more difficult to clean than other types of candy. The more time your kid spends with sugary foods on or between your teeth, the more opportunity there is for harmful bacteria to grow and cause cavities. So, the best thing you can do is limit your kid's exposure to sticky sweets and candies.
While you can't control what your children pick up while trick-or-treating, you can limit their intake by offering them some healthier options when they return home. Have sugar-free gum or peppermints in the candy bowl, so your child has something to snack on after their meal. This will help reduce any harmful effects of excess sugar consumption, such as tooth decay.
Eating too much candy can easily damage your teeth and increase your child's chances of developing tooth decay. Regular checkups and cleanings help to prevent these complications. If left untreated, tooth decay can lead to tooth loss. In fact, if decay is ignored for long enough, it can reach the inner pulp chamber of the tooth, where bacteria thrive and cause an infection called an abscessed tooth. These health concerns are why it is important to see the dentist regularly. They will help to ensure your child's oral health stays intact and their smile remains beautiful!
To learn more about maintaining your child's oral health, call Little Bytes Pediatric Dentistry, Palo Alto, at (650) 322-9837 or schedule an appointment online.