Halloween’s an exciting time, and whether you’re dressed as a vampire with fangs or a more benign character, you shouldn’t let your teeth spoil all the fun. That being said, Halloween tends to increase everyone’s sugar intake — not just trick-or-treaters’ — and exposes their teeth and gums to loads of sugars that feed bacteria, which produce acids that break down enamel, causing tooth decay and cavities.
Following a meal, saliva production increases. This is a great time to enjoy a few bites of candy, as the saliva will help wash away sugars, preventing them from sticking to your teeth and feeding harmful bacteria.
Hard candies put teeth, enamel, and fillings at risk of breaking. They also stay in the mouth longer, prolonging the time teeth and bacteria are exposed to the sugar.
Sticky candies cling to your teeth for a long time and resist being washed away by saliva. These include gummies, taffy, and other chewy confections. It’s best to avoid these, but if you do indulge, be sure to brush and floss as soon as you’re finished.
Eating bags and bags of candy does no one any good. It’s bad for your tummy, overall health, waistline, and your teeth. Either plan to donate a portion of candy or set up a bank that limits the amount of candy your children can withdraw at once.
Fluoride helps fortify tooth enamel against the acids that bacteria (that feed off sugar) produce. Brush with a toothpaste containing fluoride, rinse with a fluoride mouthwash, and talk with our dentist, Dr. Schaffer, about in-office fluoride treatments.
We love Halloween as much as the next and understand if you’ve decided to indulge in a few sweets or an entire bag of candy. To make sure your teeth don’t suffer the consequences and are ready to chow down on Thanksgiving dinner, next month, schedule a professional cleaning and exam at Schaffer Dental Excellence. Contact our office to make appointments for the whole family. We wish you happy haunting and a fun, safe Halloween!