Candy is tempting anytime of year, but there is something about holiday-themed Halloween candy that makes it so much more appealing. It’s hard to resist those pumpkin shapes and spookily wrapped sweets. If you follow these Halloween candy tips from your Red Bank dentist, you can enjoy October 31 and the weeks before and after, without damaging your teeth.
Say Yes to Chocolate
Halloween chocolate is everywhere, in so many forms. If you stick to soft chocolate bars or peanut butter cups and avoid chocolates stuffed with nuts or caramels, you can protect your teeth from damage.
Chocolate melts quickly in the heat of the mouth, which means it is less likely to cling to teeth like other sugary sweets. Just remember, chocolate still contains sugar, so you want to rinse your mouth with water after eating and brush as soon as possible afterward.
Avoid Hard Candy and Lollipops
Hard candy often seems like a safe candy to indulge in. After all, having one jawbreaker or lollipop in your mouth for an hour certainly will prevent you from digging into too many sweets and ruining your diet. Unfortunately, maintaining this constant sugar bath for an extended period is bad for your tooth enamel.
Hard candies are also problematic because, after a while, you will want to move onto something else, and you’ll be tempted to bite down to get the candy to disappear more quickly. This decision could easily result in a cracked or broken tooth, filling, veneer, or other restoration.
If you want to keep something in your mouth to prevent you from overindulging, stick to sugar-free gum with xylitol. This not only eliminates a sugar overload, it helps increase saliva production which means your mouth can work overtime to do some self-cleaning.
Eat Sticky Sweets Sparingly
Taffies, gummies, caramels, candy apples – the sweetest stuff is the clingiest stuff, and if you dig into it on Halloween you threaten the integrity of your teeth in multiple ways. When foods stick to your teeth and you don’t floss or brush quickly, those lingering particles can eat away at your tooth enamel and lead to decay, especially if your teeth are not in alignment and are harder to clean between (time to consider Invisalign if you’re in this category). Plus, gummy treats also risk pulling out existing dental restorations, which means you’ll need an emergency trip to your Red Bank dentist for a repair.
Eat All Your Candy at Once
There is nothing like a stomachache to top off Halloween night, and digging into all your candy all at once will be better for your teeth too. Popping sweet after sweet into your mouth is one big sugar bath for your teeth, but at least it’s all happening in one sitting instead of hanging around on your tooth enamel throughout the day.
Snacking may seem like the safest move for your waistline, but it’s not great for your teeth. Eat all your candy at once and you’ll satisfy your cravings, then clean your teeth right away afterward to get rid of the sweets.
Visit Your Red Bank Dentist
Besides making thorough brushing and flossing a priority every day but especially on Halloween, continue to see your Red Bank dentist for your regular cleanings and exams to ensure that any cavities or other oral health problems are caught early and addressed quickly.
Schedule your appointment with Dr. Carole Sherrod Jewell or Dr. Pauline Robinson at Red Bank Dentistry in Red Bank, NJ. And happy haunting!