Trick-or treating-on Halloween; A pediatric dentist's perspective
Updated: Feb 16, 2019
October in New York: The leaves change color, a cold chill sets in, there is pumpkin spice everything... and of course Halloween!
This is one holiday that most children look forward to all year long. They get to pick and decorate pumpkins, wear their favorite Princess or PJ masks costumes, and the favorite pastime of the day- go trick-or-treating!
Trick-or-treating can be an amazing experience for children, but many parents worry about the large amount of candy that their children collect on this one day, and how quickly they consume their giant stash! Here are some tips to help your trick or treating experience "tooth-friendly", so the months afterwards are not spent worrying about cavities that may develop.
5 Tips for a tooth- friendly Halloween from a Pediatric Dentist:
Avoid sticky/chewy candy : the longer the candy stays in the mouth, the longer they will be exposed to sugar, which will increase the chance to get cavities. Chewy and sticky candies in particular, will also stick into the grooves of the teeth more easily.
Try to ration out the collection in smaller ziplock bags and label them for weekly (or monthly) use to help limit the amount consumed at once.
After your child has their treats, try to have them rinse with tap water, rather than bottled water (NYS has fluoridated water, which helps to remineralize enamel after acid attack from candy).After eating candy, make sure they brush and floss thoroughly, as well as use a fluoride mouthrinse such as ACT to help remineralize enamel.When giving out treats at your house, consider more tooth friendly treats such as sugarfree gum, stickers ,temporary tatoos or toys like rubber duckies.
Photo by Bekir Dönmez.