Often, we associate poor oral hygiene or cavities to increased sugar consumption, and while this does certainly have an impact on the health of our teeth, it isn’t the only culprit.

Spooky season is here, and many of us will be taking our kiddos door-to-door to stock up on some sweets or even dipping our own hands in the candy jar. Although Halloween is a fun time to dress up and enjoy a sugary treat or two, it is still important to be mindful of the horrifying, traumatic impact that candy and desserts can have on our teeth.

Often, we associate poor oral hygiene or cavities to increased sugar consumption, and while this does certainly have an impact on the health of our teeth, it isn’t the only evil villain lurking in the dark culprit. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), chocolate is the preferred (i.e. safest) candy choice since it easily washes off and doesn’t settle into the grooves of teeth.

The ADA supports the celebration of Halloween, but they do caution on the terrifying impact that certain sweets can have, such as sour, sticky and hard candies. The warnings come with reason, though, as these candies are some of the worst for your teeth since sour and sticky candy generally sits in the mouth for longer periods of time, clinging to the teeth like some nightmarish parasite making it more difficult to wash away. Meanwhile, hard candies pose the risk of tooth-breakage.

Coincidentally, the day following Halloween is National Brush (your teeth) Day. Consider sitting down with your children on November 1 and having them choose a couple pieces from their candy haul to enjoy over the next few days while you frighten them with blood curdling tales share with them the effect that sweet treats (and don’t forget beverages, too!) can have on their teeth and, as always, don’t forget to encourage daily dental hygiene.

How to Practice Good Dental Hygiene:

Remember the Rule of Two’s

  • Brush teeth two times per day, for two minutes, with a fluoride toothpaste.

Do the Floss

  • The dental kind that is … not the dance. Remember to floss between your teeth at least once a day to remove plaque and any hard to reach food debris.

Choose Sweets Wisely

  • Eat a healthy diet that limits sugary treats and beverages. Reminder that it is best to eat sugary foods after a meal and with water.

Schedule Your Cleaning

  • Visit your dentist regularly for a thorough clean and early detection.

Resources

Dental Tips for a Healthy Halloween – American Dental Association (mouthhealthy.org)

Best and Worst Halloween Candy for Your Teeth – American Dental Association (mouthhealthy.org)

Adult Oral Health | Basics | Division of Oral Health | CDC

Weekly Recipe

(Healthy Enough) Halloween Charcuterie Board

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Jessica Lenahan

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Jessica Lenahan

Kinetiq Health Program Manager

As a Kinetiq Health Program Manager, Jessica works with her clients to develop unique wellness programs designed to improve the productivity and health of their employee demographic. Within this role, she engages in one-on-one health coaching, creates and implements health and wellness programs, and evaluates client-based needs to provide customized solutions to encourage a healthy workplace culture.

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