Recently, I was meeting my friends, Mike and Ike, to talk about Halloween. They decided to play a Twix on me. I was eating my favorite Mexican food and listening to my favorite musical artist….Marshmellow….when they slipped some Jalapenos on my plate. That made for some very Hot Tamales.
After drinking a lot of water to put out the Fire Ball in my mouth, I heard some Snickers from those two. They are just a couple of big Nerds.
They had just come back from a fishing trip to Scandinavia. Apparently, they caught quite a few Swedish Fish. They saw some local artists with an unusual style. From what I understand, they used chalk-a-lot.
We began talking about the Good & Plenty amount of candy that was going to be passed out on October 31st. We tried to come up with ways to limit the chance of getting a cavity from all that sugar. We’d love to give each patient a 100 Grand to skip the sweet stuff, but we know you’re a bunch of Smarties who will brush your teeth just like you ought to!
All kidding aside, as a dentist, my advice is to limit the exposure time of sugar on your teeth. The more contact candy has to your teeth, the more chance a cavity will form. One strategy is to eat your candy like dessert. You should be brushing before you go to bed anyway and that will help remove any sugar that may be lurking around. I do not recommend putting left over Halloween candy in a child’s school lunch bag. Brushing should follow anything sweet and there is limited availability to do that at school.
I hope everyone has a Happy Halloween but a sensible planfor eating the left-over candy that comes with this most sugary holiday!
Ahhh, Halloween! Who doesn’t love all the spooky decorations and adorable costumes? But then there’s the candy … all. that. candy. As parents we want our kiddos to enjoy the holiday, but what are we to do about about all that sugar?!? Luckily the DFC docs are here with a few tricks to keep your kids’ smiles safe from all those treats!
Dr. Katrina Hays recommends avoiding sticky candies. They tend to get stuck in between teeth thus giving sugar more time to do its dirty work! Her #1 candy recommendation? Chocolate!!! “Chocolate melts in your mouth so it doesn’t spend as much time on your teeth!” Now that’s a recommendation we can all get behind!
Dr. Michael Becker takes a different tack to Halloween goodies. “Let them indulge on Halloween night! Eat that candy up! But then get rid of ALL THE REST. It’s all about how often sugar is sitting on your teeth. A one-time candy fest (followed by a thorough brushing, of course) is better than a candy every day after school.”
“Listen to the experts!” says Dr. Jeff Hays. “The AAPD (American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry) cautions parents to avoid ‘chewy or sticky candies like caramels, gummies and sour candies.’ Stick with pretzels, crackers, and milk chocolate. Even better alternatives are dark chocolate and sugar-free gum. The less time your teeth are in contact with sugary sweets, the better!”
Of course, all of our dentists echo one sentiment above all the rest, “BRUSH! BRUSH! BRUSH!” Make sure to get a good, thorough brush and floss before heading off to bed after trick-or-treating. Don’t leave any sticky sugars or stuck popcorn kernels behind to do their dirty work while kiddos sleep.
And … ahem … not that any of our parents are out there raiding treat buckets and bags after bedtime, but just in case, make sure you get a good brush and floss before bedtime as well!
From the Dentistry for Children family to all our patients and families, have a safe and happy Halloween!