How Much Is Too Much Candy for Healthy Teeth?
In just a few short days, young trick-or-treaters will be headed out on their mission to collect as much candy as they can. Meanwhile, parents will be wondering how much damage their little ones’ teeth will sustain. Let’s face it. Your child will probably eat more candy than is healthy. So how much is too much candy this Halloween?
How Much Candy Is Too Much?
Sugar in any amount can be harmful to your child’s smile. It can also cause health concerns, which is why the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no added sugars for children under two years of age and no more than 25 grams of added sugar a day for children ages two and older. When it comes to Halloween, the trick is to allow children to have fun trick-or-treating while preventing damage to their teeth.
Halloween Dental Trick-or-Treat Tips
Here are some ways you can reduce the harmful impacts of Halloween candy on your child’s smile:
Maintain Good Oral Hygiene: Halloween happens once a year, but your child’s smile needs caring for every day. Teach your child to brush at least twice a day with a soft-bristled brush and fluoride toothpaste. Make sure to visit Smile Explorers Dentistry for your little one’s routine dental exams and cleanings. Proper oral hygiene care throughout the year will allow your child to indulge in sweet Halloween treats without causing extensive damage to their teeth.
Avoid Snacking: The longer your child sucks on a piece of candy or munches on some gummies, the worse the damage. It is not only the quantity of sugar that is harmful; it is the length of time it sits on the teeth. So do not allow your child to snack on candies all day long.
Time the Treats: Save your little one’s sweet treats for during or right after mealtimes because saliva production increases when your child eats, reducing damage to the teeth. Wash down the candy with water, and have your little one brush and floss to minimize damage to those pearly whites.
Avoid the Worst Treats: Choose sweet treats wisely. Offer chocolate treats instead of sticky, gummy, or sour candy. Chocolate melts quickly and will not linger, unlike sticky candies that get trapped in every groove and crevice. Sour candies are not much better because they contain high sugar levels and are acidic, posing a double threat to your child’s smile.
Coordinate with Neighbors: If you are in a friendly community, coordinate with other parents and choose healthy treats for the neighborhood kids. Maybe throw in some savory snacks, nicely packaged fruits, or sugar-free treats. Together, you can safeguard the smiles of children in your community.
Donate Candy: Have your child experience the joy of giving by donating some of the Halloween candy to charities or non-profit organizations. Aside from a lesson in generosity, you will be safeguarding your child’s smile.
Set a Time Limit: Your little one will not develop cavities after a night of candy and celebration. The problem arises when the candy stash sits around for weeks after Halloween, so it is best to set a time limit. Give your child a day or two, then repossess the candy stash and dole out no more than a small, sweet treat every other day.
Quality Preventive Dentistry Near Me in Glendale, AZ
If you would like more tips about safeguarding your child’s smile this Halloween, contact your trusted team at Smile Explorers Pediatric Dentistry. We are happy to answer your questions and work alongside you to ensure your little one maintains strong teeth and happy, pain-free smiles. Call us and schedule your appointment today!