Did you know that Halloween is second only to Christmas as the most popular holiday celebrated in America? After all, what’s not to love about dressing up as something you aren’t –perhaps a villain or a childhood hero, going to parties and bringing home a bag (or more) full of candy?
However, while the parties and dressing up are not damaging (we hope), the quantity of candy that will be consumed is not just unhealthy for the waistline, but can greatly affect one’s dental health if steps are not taken to prevent it. So, to help you keep your children’s teeth healthy after Halloween –as well as the rest of the year- be sure to follow these guidelines as stated by Dr. Mark Malterud the spokesperson for the Academy of General Dentistry:
Children should brush their teeth after having candy. If a toothbrush isn’t handy, give children a glass of water to wash away the sugars. However, hold off on the brushing for at least 30 minutes if a child has had sour candy, which is likely acidic. Brushing can spread the acid onto more tooth surfaces, increasing its erosive action on tooth enamel. Candy should only be had, after eating a nutritious meal, as chewing during a meal stimulates saliva, which has protective enzymes and minerals to cleanse the teeth and protect against cavities. As much as possible, opt for sugar free lollipops, hard candies and chewing gum instead of the sugary versions. No matter what season it is, kids should be brushing their teeth for two minutes twice a day and flossing once a day. It’s especially important to brush before bedtime. Otherwise, sugars will linger on the teeth all night long, increasing their risk of cavities. Eat healthy and get plenty of exercise. Remember, your teeth were designed for eating, not opening tubes or bottles!
Ironically, October is National Dental Hygiene month. Definitely some odd twist of fate, that the same month where extremely large bags of candy grace the shelves of retail locations is the same month that focuses on dental health, isn’t it? But though it might seem an odd juxtaposition on the calendar, that doesn’t mean one must abstain from Trick or Treating and all its fun. Rather, it just means that one will want to hyper-vigilant in dental care in the days and weeks to follow.
The Dr. Barwick, DDS PA and Associates team is here to help you, with all your dental needs. Please feel free to ask us online through our social media pages (Facebook, Google Plus and Twitter) or call the office, if you should have any questions regarding dental health.Leave a reply