We all know Halloween is about all things spooky, from ghost stories to scary movies and creepy costumes. But what about the truly scary side of this holiday? With all the candy that kids and adults consume, there is often a higher risk of developing tooth decay. How do you avoid cavities? What can you do to protect your smile while enjoying this otherwise fun holiday?
Halloween and Tooth Decay
Halloween is a lot of fun, but the holiday also encourages kids to eat lots of candy. As bacteria break down the sugar particles, the levels of oral acidity in the mouth elevate. In addition, the teeth are coated in plaque, a bacterial byproduct that weakens tooth enamel, allowing bacteria to bypass this protective layer and reach the inner dentin, where a cavity can form. Children and adults may then notice sensitive teeth and eventually, persistent toothaches.
How to Limit the Risk of Decay
As parents, you can try offering your kids a chance to trade their candy in to you in exchange for a toy or maybe a trip to somewhere fun, like the movies. They can also keep their favorite pieces but donate the rest to programs such as Operation Gratitude, which gives the excess candy to troops overseas. Both you and your children also need to take better of your smiles. You should be brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once a day to help remove sugar particles and protect the teeth from cavities.
Visit Your Dentist
Every six months you and your family should also see the dentist for a checkup and cleaning. A checkup allows the doctor to identify and treat decay in the earliest stages. A cleaning enables the doctor or hygienist to remove plaque buildup from the teeth limiting the risk of cavities.