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Best and Worst Halloween Candy for your Teeth

October 22, 2012
We love Halloween – and it’s just around the corner! Let’s be honest – we eat just as much candy (if not more!) than the kids —just can’t help it with that big bowl sitting out in front of us, taunting us with it’s ooey gooey deliciousness! So, before you dive in, at least make sure the candy you are eating and giving your children is some of the better options – think avoiding cavities!”Of course, dentists do not advocate that children eat large amounts of sugary treats, but it is that time of year, so we want to clarify for parents which treats are better for their kids’ teeth and which ones may increase the risk of developing cavities,” says AGD spokesperson Cynthia Sherwood, DDS, FAGD.Worst Candy for Halloween:

  • Chewy/sticky sweets –  gummy bears, gummy worms, Gushers, taffy, Happy Colas, fruit roll ups, and even dried fruit can be difficult for children and adults to resist —even more difficult to remove from teeth. These candies get stuck in crevices between teeth and can become a serious source of tooth decay. Once embedded, saliva has a hard time removing it away, leaving the only removal for immediate tooth brushing and flossing, and how many of us actually carry around a toothbrush and floss?
  • Sour candies – think sourpatch kids,  are extremely acidic and break down tooth enamel very fast. However, saliva DOES slowly help to restore the natural balance of the acid in the mouth, you should still wait at least 30 minutes to brush your teeth between consuming sour/acidic candies and brushing, or you could just be brushing the acid onto more tooth surfaces and increasing the risk of enamel erosion. Scary!!!
  • Sugary snacks – including candy corn, cookies, muffins, cupcakes (yes even the mini ones!) and cake, all contain high amounts of sugar, which can cause tooth decay. Sorry!

Best Candy for Halloween: THE GOOD NEWS!

  • Sugar-free lollipops and hard candies – think jolly ranchers – these types of candy stimulate saliva, which can help prevent dry mouth. A dry mouth allows plaque to build up on teeth faster, leading to an increased risk of cavities. Who knew!?
  • Sugar-free gum – is good for actually preventing cavities because it not only dislodges food particles from between the teeth but also increases saliva—which as mentioned above, helps to neutralize the acids of the mouth and prevent tooth decay.
  • Dark chocolate and its antioxidants, YAY!!! – according to some studies, chocolate can be good for the heart and may even lower blood pressure!

No matter what candy you choose or bring into your home, parents should always closely monitor their children’s candy intake this Halloween—and all year round—and continue to promote good oral health habits!


NOTE: Dr. Hayner’s office will be doing a Halloween Candy Buy Back on Monday, November 5th – 10 am – 4 pm. $3 per child – donations shipped to soldiers overseas!

One Comment leave one →
  1. October 22, 2012 4:39 pm

    Reblogged this on DONUTS AND DOGS and commented:
    Teeth and Halloween Candy

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