Dental Health Tips for HalloweenFall is here and that means that the holiday season is right around the corner. Halloween is this month, and it marks the beginning of what many would consider to be the annual time of over-indulgence and sweets. Many may see an increase in their consumption of treats and sweets in the next few months, but this can also increase your chances of cavities and tooth decay. Halloween in particular can be a hard one to fight; children come home with a mountain of candy and are therefore tempted to consume more candy than they can stomach. When parents attempt to limit their child’s consumption, they can find themselves tempted or eating a large amount of candies themselves!

However, there are ways to help balance out some of the health challenges of the consumption of sweets. In addition, it serves as an excellent opportunity to teach your children good habits that will stick with them for life.  Read on to learn some helpful dental health tips for Halloween, so that you and your family can have a happy and healthy holiday!

  • Let them have their candy

It is important to not deny your child the Halloween experience because it can spread the wrong message and have the opposite effect of what you want. If you deprive your child of the experience it can make candy seem even more irresistible to them and this can lead to other problems down the road. Let them eat their candy and enjoy the experience. You can set a limit on the amount of candy they are able to eat per day, and then hide the rest so it is out of sight. This will allow your child to enjoy the experience, and they will be less likely to try to sneak sweets or go overboard if/when the opportunity arises.

  • Set a time

In order to help find the balance between healthy thinking and the enjoyment of sweets set a time during the day that they can eat their Halloween loot. Having a “treat-time” creates a ritual that can help children learn moderation, and that sweets should not be an all-day feast. Remember, moderation is key-let your children the lesson that having candy and other sweets in excess can lead to cavities.  A good time for “treat-time” is at meal time or right after mealtime. During a meal, saliva production increases, and this aids in the cancellation of the acids that are produced by the bacteria in your mouth and can help rinse away particles of food.

  • Eat healthy and stay hydrated

Drinking water and staying hydrated can help rinse away any particles of food out of your mouth, so make sure you drink water during and after consumption to help with the potential of tooth decay. Know and live the saying “you are what you eat”, your body is a complex machine and you need the proper fuel in order to have a healthy body, as well as healthy teeth and gums. Eating a healthy diet can help balance out the consumption of sweets.

  • Avoid hard and sticky candies

Limit or cut out any sticky candies that cling to your teeth, or candies that stay in your mouth for a long time. If you have a sugar-filled candy in the mouth for a long period of time you are subjecting the teeth to an increased risk of tooth decay. In addition, candies such as gummy bears and taffy are sticky enough to cling to your teeth, which can make it harder for it to be washed away. If there is a lack of good dental hygiene, this can cause a sticky situation for your teeth as it can increase the risk of tooth decay.

  • Brush after “treat-time”

Make sure your children brush and floss immediately after “treat-time”, so this way your child’s teeth are not left exposed to any leftover sweet particulars in the mouth. Creating a ritual where you have your child brushing and flossing at a particular time, or after a particular event, as this will help get them into the habit of brushing their teeth, and can increase the likely hood of it sticking. Regular brushing and flossing is the best way to prevent tooth decay and a good way to develop healthy habits.