Although experts encourage parents to let their kids have fun on Halloween because one night of candy is not enough to cause cavities, the amount of candy they collect can last for days and affect their oral health. To avoid issues with your family’s dental health, here are five tips that can help you and your children maintain healthy teeth around this season.
1. Drink Water To Balance Mouth pH Levels
Although you can limit candy consumption as much as you want, you cannot avoid having candy around Halloween. Be sure to drink water to help balance the pH levels in your mouth after eating candy, even if you only eat a few pieces.
Also, remind your children to make a habit of drinking water after eating a lot of sugar. You can explain that the water rinses the candy sugar that clings to their teeth and affects their oral health.
2. Chew Gum Containing Xylitol To Control Acid Production
Chewing xylitol products like sugar-free gum is another way to balance the pH levels in your mouth. These products help increase salivation. More saliva means your mouth can wash acids and bacteria to protect your teeth.
Xylitol also helps block acid production to further protect your teeth. You can look for gum containing xylitol in your local drugstore. Consider stocking up on it if you expect your children to bring home buckets of candy after trick-or-treating.
3. Brush Your Teeth To Remove Cavity-causing Bacteria
Be sure to brush your teeth between 30 and 60 minutes after eating sweets. Brushing and flossing correctly remains the best way to keep your teeth free of cavities, especially after eating Halloween candy. When it comes to your kids, consider only allowing them to eat Halloween candy after dinner, so they can brush their teeth in time for bed.
4. Sort Your Candy To Avoid Tooth Decay
You can control what kinds of candy you buy for your kids this season, but you never know what they will bring home after a night of trick-or-treating. Once they come home, encourage them to sort through their candy and leave certain ones for special occasions.
For example, your kids can keep the fun-sized candy and save the full-sized ones for later. Also, you can help them categorize their candy according to their types, like soft, sticky, and hard candy.
Soft candy like marshmallows will be easier on their teeth. However, sticky sweets like caramels can stick to their teeth and promote tooth decay. Likewise, hard candy dissolves slowly, giving bacteria more sugar to turn into acid. Consider limiting the harmful candy types.
5. Exchange Your Candy for Money
After sorting through your candy and finding some to discard, you can exchange it for money through a local Halloween Candy Buyback program near you. This way, nothing goes to waste, and your kids can even be part of a bigger cause.
Enjoy Halloween Candy Responsibly
Overall, the best tip to maintain good oral health is to balance the sugar levels in the mouth to control bacteria formation. Otherwise, you may be due for extractions once the sugar causes cavities. Keep these tips in mind and see which ones you can implement in your household.