Is There an Impact on Teeth with Halloween Candy?
Ghosts, goblins and tooth decay, oh my!! October features one of America’s favorite holidays: Halloween. Witches, monsters and princesses roaming the streets collecting candy. Most parents have echoed the line that candy will rot children’s teeth, there’s no reason to deny children the enjoyment of candy, but it’s important understand the Halloween candy impact on teeth so you can supervise them to ensure that their Halloween is enjoyed in a way that keeps their teeth safe.
Sugar does in fact promote decay, but the effect of sugar is not instant. If children eat candy for a short time period, and then brush their teeth a short time later, the impact of the sugar is fairly minimal. So rather than an all day feast, have a fixed window for candy. This allows them to prioritize their candy enjoyment, minimizes the chances that they’ll consume far too much, and by following treats with brushing, helps prevent cavities.
Parents can use Halloween as a way to teach children about moderation – by teaching children to eat a moderate amount of treats, you’ll encourage them to practice moderation in their daily lives, including other sugary foods they’ll encounter year round such as sweet juices and starch heavy breads. Allow your children to choose the candy they want to eat, but set a limit on the number of pieces, and remove the extras – they can be saved for a future day, frozen for later, thrown away, or donated.
Children often need stimulation beyond simple health to brush regularly and sufficiently, so swap toothbrushes every few months with new, fun characters/colors, and give your children the opportunity to pick their own toothpaste (be sure it contains fluoride).
If you have questions on Halloween may impact your children’s dental health, contact Dr. Farless, or ask during one of your scheduled appointments – he’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have.
Call Dr. Graham E. Farless DDS today for more information on oral health, 336-282-2868. Visit his practice online at www.gsodentist.com.