Typically, you can help your children protect their teeth by teaching them good hygiene and introducing them to professional dental care at an early age. However, every year, there comes a time when everything you’ve taught them goes out the window as they collect, and enjoy, literal bags full of sugary, salty, sticky, chewy, crunchy, cavity-causing candies. Chances are, they won’t finish their entire bags of treats in one night, so the real trick to protecting your children’s teeth lies in what you do now that Halloween has already passed.
What to Do With So Much Candy
- The first night, you should actually allow your children to binge on a small portion of their candy, and to do so quickly. In moderation, a few extra pieces of candy won’t cause as much harm to your kids’ teeth if the candy is consumed quickly, rather than lingering around in their mouths. The more time your children’s teeth are exposed to sugars and starches, the more they can feed the bacteria in plaque, which turn the substances into tooth-attacking acids.
- With the remaining treasure, you might be surprised how easy it is to parcel it out when you make it a reward for good behavior. Bribe your children for finishing their chores each day; for completing their homework and receiving good grades; or as a treat for finishing all of their vegetables, just before brushing their teeth and going to bed.
- Even if they don’t overindulge, the sugar, starches, and acidic substances found in candy can still pose a threat if you don’t help your children keep their teeth clean and healthy. Besides good hygiene, be sure to feed your children plenty of calcium, phosphate, and other minerals and nutrients their teeth need by making healthy, well-balanced meals and snacks at home. Fruits and vegetables (particularly green, leafy vegetables), beef, chicken, turkey, milk, cheese, and most other dairy products are typically good choices for healthy teeth.
To learn more, schedule an appointment by calling (203) 878-6699. The specialists at Sensitive Care Cosmetic & Family Dentistry proudly serve patients and their families in Milford, Stratford, West Haven, New Haven, and all surrounding communities.