Halloween season is here, with our children’s teeth susceptible to tooth decay from sugary sweets, treats, and candy.  With zombies, bats, ghosts, and vampires around, trick or treat candy may cause tooth decay if good diet and oral hygiene are not addressed.   Since Halloween October 31 trick or treat time is coming, it would be a good opportunity to go over some healthy tips for kids and adults alike!

Over 33% of children in the US had a least one cavity last year.  Now that stores are promoting Halloween sales of candies and chocolate bars enticing kids and shoppers, parents can adopt some easy strategies to keep everyonekids brushing flossing Halloween ‘s teeth healthy and cavity free.

HOW TO HELP PREVENT CAVITIES

Below are some tips to help kids have a fun and healthy Halloween event:

  1. Remember, everything is good in moderation.  It’s okay to consume candy, just try to consume it in small amounts at a single setting.
  2. Try not to start the fall and winter holiday season with candy in the house.  Instead of giving out Halloween candy, try pencils, stickers, small toys, and even toothbrush and floss!
  3. When the kids are ready to go trick or treating, have them eat first dinner.  They’ll be less likely to consume large amounts of candy.
  4. When trick or treating, ask your kids to take only ONE piece of treat, even if they are offered multiple pieces.
  5.  After the kids are done trick-or-treating and they are home, sort out the candies into two piles.  One pile should be a small one of their “favorites.”  The other pile put in a bag for donations to help the less fortunate enjoy Halloween as well.
  6. After eating candy, have your children drink plain water.  Water helps rinse away excessive sugar and candies stuck on the teeth that may cause tooth decay.
  7. After the Halloween activities have taken place, make sure your children brush and floss their teeth prior to bedtime.
  8. Ask your dentist if there is a candy buy back program.  Some dental offices will pay to buy candy by the pound to ship to United States soldiers overseas.

Tooth decay is by far the most common disease that occurs during childhood.  Sugar and plaque are significant factors in tooth decay.  Remember, enjoy everything in moderation, and by practicing good oral health, your children can have a fun and healthy October 31st!

Warm Regards,

Peter Chien, DMD, MPH

Bellevue Family Dentistry, 1299 156th Ave NE #115, Bellevue, WA, 98007.

(425) 614-1600