With Halloween festivities looming on the horizon, many kids’ thoughts turn to the impending night of unforgettable fun they’re about to enjoy. For parents too, the experience of Trick or Treating can be an annual opportunity for making memories that last a lifetime. Of course, there’s also all of that candy that your kids are going to loot from the homes in your neighborhood – and if you’re like most parents, chances are you’ll be partaking of the night’s sugary sweet haul yourself, right? Well, be forewarned: if you’re not careful, the spookiest night of the year could end up haunting your dental health and send you running to the dentist in terror.
Now, no one is suggesting that you and your children have to avoid the Halloween treats altogether. After all, where’s the fun in that? Instead, you should work to exercise a little sound judgment, to ensure that everyone in the family avoids the types of treats that cause the most damage to teeth. Fortunately, once you recognize the worst offenders on that list, and develop some sound rules for enjoying those sweets, you can do a much better job of avoiding severe dental damage.
Here are two of the sweet options that have the most potential for harming your teeth:
- Hard sugar candy. These include things like hard mints and suckers that can pose risks to your teeth in a couple of ways. First, many people bite down on hard candy, and that can result in breaks or chips in the teeth. Additionally, candies like that are usually enjoyed over a period of time, as the user sucks on them as they dissolve. That increases the teeth’s exposure to sugar.
- Chewy treats. These include things like taffy, caramel, and those gummy sweets that so many kids love. Not only are they extremely high in sugar, but that sugar tends to get caught in the teeth before the saliva can properly dissolve it.
If it sounds like there are no good options left, think again. For while it would be better to avoid all sugary candies when possible, there are still some that are less damaging than others. Those include things like chocolate which at least dissolves quickly enough to ensure that your teeth don’t spend any longer than necessary in contact with the sugar. Sugar-free candies and gum are also a better option than hard candy or chewy selections.
As tempting as it is for some dental professionals to act like the Halloween version of the Grinch, the fact is that most people are still going to celebrate the Halloween event with candy. Still, even for those who don’t use alternative treats like money, fruit, or even trail mix, there are some options that are friendlier for your teeth than others.
Here at Ebenezer Dental, we do more than provide routine care and dental implants in Midtown Manhattan. We also try to work with our patients to provide them with the advice and counsel they need to help them protect their teeth and gums from potential risks. In this case, our advice is simple: if you exercise a little more care and caution this Halloween, your teeth will definitely thank you for it!