Halloween is one of the most fun-loving times of the year for kids! What kid doesn’t enjoy dressing up in their favorite costume, going to Halloween parties, and getting massive amounts of candy and sweet treats? It’s a sugar-lover’s dream! But as fun as it may be for children, Halloween can be a parent’s nightmare! With all the extra sweets, what is a parent to do? How can you protect your child’s teeth without becoming the “enemy of fun?” If you find yourself facing this dilemma, here are a few tips you might find helpful:
Have a Plan
Most dentists agree that eating candy on that one special occasion, such as Halloween, is not going to wreak havoc with your child’s teeth. Have your child pick out their favorite pieces to eat. Make it a learning time to teach your child the importance of brushing their teeth after any sugary treat.
Eat Treats After a Meal
Additional saliva is produced to digest meals. This additional saliva can also help protect your child’s teeth from the acids created by breaking down the sugary treats.
Drink Lots of Water
Plenty of water will help dilute the acids and bacteria from sugary treats and will also help make your child feel full quicker so they won’t be tempted to eat as many treats.
Limit the Sticky Treats
A good rule of thumb is that “the-sticker-it-is-the-longer-it-stays-on-your-teeth”. Limit sticky candies like gummy bears, caramel, etc.
Give to Others
Let your child pick out a certain number of their favorite treats and then donate the rest. Your child will enjoy their favorites and also then experience the joy of sharing with others.
Make it a Learning Experience
Take this opportunity to teach your children the importance of brushing their teeth after eating sugary treats. Go over the ABC’s of tooth brushing and maybe let them pick out a new toothbrush to practice with. This is also a good time to pick up some flavored dental floss and practice their flossing.
Prepare Healthy Snacks
Make sure plenty of healthy snacks are available for your child to snack on instead of reaching for sweets. Fresh fruits and veggies that provide plenty of crunch will help balance out that need for sweet treats.
Choose Your Treats Wisely
Try to limit the amount of candies that stay in the mouth for a long time. These include hard candies. The longer sugary food stays in your mouth, the more time it has to promote tooth decay.
Schedule a Dental Appointment
After all the trick-or-treat fun is over, it’s a good idea to visit your dentist. A good dental check up will alert you to any possible areas of concern and will also teach your child that while you can have a little holiday fun, it is always important to take care of your health.
Life is About Balance
Be sure to enjoy the season with your children, but also show them the importance of immediately getting right back to their healthy habits.
If you’re looking for a great dentist, Dr. Halina Montano is a great choice! Conveniently located in Boca Raton, Dr. Montano provides excellent dental care for the entire family as well as superb cosmetic dental care! Call 561-232-2070 today and schedule a post-Halloween appointment for both you and your child! Help your children keep their teeth healthy while keeping your teeth healthy as well!