Halloween is a fun and exciting time for children. For them, trick-or-treating promises plenty of sweets to enjoy once the night ends. Meanwhile, it can feel tough for parents to balance ensuring their child’s smile remains healthy while allowing them to eat the candies they love. Thankfully, allowing your child to enjoy Halloween treats is possible – if done responsibly. Here are a few tips and tricks to scare away any potential cavities from developing this Halloween from a trusted pediatric dentist in Calgary!
The Best Tips & Tricks From a Pediatric Dentist in Calgary
Prevent Candy Binges
After trick-or-treating, kids quickly want to indulge in their heaps of candy. Yet, any pediatric dentist in Calgary can tell you that eating too many high-sugar treats can lead to nasty cavities. Teaching your child to practice moderation is a good compromise when eating Halloween treats. After all, with so much candy, they shouldn’t eat it all at once – lest they have a stomach ache and wear away their teeth! Ensure your child isn’t constantly snacking on their candies by only allowing them to have a piece during a meal to satisfy their sweet tooth. Another important consideration is portion size. Sometimes while trick-or-treating, they get a big bar of chocolate – which usually has lots of sugar. Instead of them eating the full bar, they eat small pieces from it. This way, they can at least reduce sugar consumption.
Avoiding Certain Candy
Some candies are worse than others. Beyond high sugar content, their textures can make them harder to remove and cause enamel to wear away. The culprit candies that do this are usually sticky, chewy, sour, or long-lasting hard candies. If your child also has braces, it’s highly recommended they steer clear of these candies since it will only make maintaining their oral hygiene even harder.
Here are a few sweets to avoid:
- Gummy candies (e.g. gummy bears)
- Any caramels
- All taffy
- Sour candies
- Lollipops (only if in the mouth for too long)
Choosing Alternative Treats
Thankfully, chocolate bars and various candies aren’t the only sweet treats to eat. There are plenty of alternative treats that are healthy and nutritious that are just as delicious and sweet!
In our Halloween blog last year, we referenced the following recipes in detail if you wish to try them out this year:
- Mummy Pumpkin Bars
- Snack-O’Lantern Fruit Cups
- Mini Mummy Pizzas
- Monster Wraps
Beyond what’s listed, you can find various healthy alternatives online for recipes. These are great ideas for throwing a Halloween party for your children and their friends.
Thorough Oral Hygiene
Technically, everyone should practice oral hygiene twice daily. But, when it comes to Halloween, it’s more important than ever to be proactive with it. After all, allowing sugar to settle on their teeth can lead to tooth decay that becomes cavities. Help motivate your child by getting into the Halloween spirit and making a game of ‘scaring away cavities’ through proper brushing and flossing. It’s a fun Halloween-inspired idea that helps keep your little one’s pearly whites shining! Also, a bonus tip: ensure your child drinks plenty of water! Water helps to wash away sugar still clinging to their teeth and balances the pH level in their mouths.
Visiting a dentist shouldn’t be a scary experience for children, and Happy Trails Children’s Dentistry is here to make sure that children feel safe and excited for their regular checkups. Happy Trails is a professional pediatric dentistry proudly serving south Calgary, and we have a goal of creating an inviting and comfortable space for children to receive the best care available. With our fantastic dentist, Dr. Sam, our young patients of Calgary will always have a positive dental experience!