Enjoying holiday treats while keeping teeth healthy

healthy teeth this halloweenHalloween is upon us, and the winter holidays aren’t far behind. As parents, you might be cringing at the thought of all the sugary, sweet, chewy holiday candies and foods your children will eat.

Help your children maintain healthy teeth this Halloween and beyond with these tips:

Set a Specific Candy Time

If you have a lot of candy after Halloween night, set a specific time each day for candy time. Do not let your kids snack on candy all day; limiting candy time limits the amount of time sugar sits on your kids’ teeth.

Candies to Avoid

Some candies you want to avoid include taffy, gummies, caramel and other sticky/chewy candies. These can stick to the teeth, which exposes teeth to sugar for a longer period of time.

Candies to Limit

Some candies you want to limit during Halloween time include sour candies. These often contain acids that erode teeth and cause cavities. You should also limit hard candies that stay in the mouth for longer periods of time.

Candies to Encourage

Better candy choices for healthy teeth include chocolate and sugar-free gum.

Drink Water and Brush Teeth

After eating candy and other sugary foods, encourage your kids to drink some water and brush their teeth to get rid of the sugar.

After Halloween, we look forward to Thanksgiving and other winter holidays and the delicious food that goes with them. Below is a quick guide for choosing some teeth-friendly options.

Other Holiday Foods to Avoid

  • Eggnog – It is full of sugar and can stay on your teeth for a long time.
  • Candy Canes – Candy canes are pure sugar, which can build up as bacteria in your mouth and cause a lot of teeth problems.
  • Carbonated drinks – Carbonated drinks can leave acid in your mouth, which can dissolve the enamel of your teeth, making them sensitive and more likely to develop cavities.
  • Ice cubes – You may not think about ice cubes when you think about holiday food, but they can be really hard on your teeth when you chew and crunch them.

Other Holiday Foods to Eat

  • Popcorn – Popcorn is a great snack and you can dress it up any way you want with cheese, different flavors or just some plain sea salt.
  • Cheese – cheese has a low acidity level, which means it is better for your teeth than other holiday foods.
  • Nuts – Did you know that nuts have calcium and that helps your teeth stay strong? When the nuts are passed around an open fire – take a handful.

If you would like to learn more about taking care of your teeth over the holidays, please contact us today.