Halloween is a fun, spooky time for kids and adults alike. But no ghost, ghoul or monster is scarier than the idea of visiting your pediatric dentist and finding out that your children need dental fillings because of Halloween-candy induced cavities!
So, how can you keep your kids’ teeth cavity-free this Halloween? Just follow a few simple tips from Nashoba Valley Dental!
Whether you buy your kids a bunch of candy for Halloween, or they’ve come home with a big stash of sweets from trick-or-treating, make sure you either hide their candy stashes or put them somewhere that’s not easily accessible.
Letting your kids control their own candy consumption will mean upset stomachs, grumpy moods and a higher risk of tooth decay. So make sure you’re in control of candy consumption so that your children snack responsibly.
You and your kids should not snack on sugary treats periodically throughout the day. If you eat one or two pieces of candy every hour all day, you’re creating a very sugar-rich environment in your mouth, and your saliva won’t be able to neutralize all the acid as bacteria munch on these sugars. This heightens the risk of tooth decay.
You and your kids should restrict your candy consumption to one or two “sessions” per day, ideally after mealtimes. Eating after meals means your kids will already be full and won’t eat too much candy, and high saliva production will help eliminate sugar from their mouths.
Brushing immediately after eating candy is the best way to prevent cavities. However, rinsing with water or mouthwash, or even just drinking a large glass of water, can help eliminate sugar from your mouth.
Sugar-free gum helps, too. It stimulates saliva production and helps get rid of sugar particles and candy debris, which reduces the risk of tooth decay.
Chocolate is actually not that bad for your teeth compared to sticky, gummy and hard candies which tend to get stuck in your teeth. Chocolate rinses away cleanly and is easier to remove from the teeth. We recommend chocolate bars that don’t contain sticky substances like caramel and nougat.
Just because you’re a responsible parent doesn’t mean you’re immune from cavities! Tooth decay affects kids most frequently during Halloween, but adults can get cavities, too. By following the tips above, you’ll keep your mouth healthy and be a good role model for your kids!
The above tips are helpful for cavity prevention, but you should also make sure that you and your kids are getting regular six-month oral exams and teeth cleanings. Seeing a family dentist like Dr. Matthew Annesse of Nashoba Valley Dental regularly helps prevent cavities, and ensures that you and your children have healthy smiles.
So to prepare for Halloween this year, make sure you get in touch with Nashoba Valley Dental for an appointment. Give us a call at (978) 425-9088, or stop by our office in person at 228 Great Road, Shirley, MA 01464 to schedule a teeth cleaning and oral exam today.