With Halloween right around the corner, we are all going to indulge a little (or a lot), and it is important to make good decisions when treating ourselves. Just in time for Halloween, the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) issued a press release of the best and worst candy choices.
- Chewy/sticky sweets, such as gummy candies, taffy, and even dried fruit can be difficult for children and adults to resist, and even more difficult to remove from teeth.
- Sour candies are highly acidic and can break down tooth enamel quickly. The good news: Saliva slowly helps to restore the natural balance of the acid in the mouth. The AGD recommends that patients wait 30 minutes to brush their teeth after consuming sour/acidic candies; otherwise, they will be brushing the acid onto more tooth surfaces and increasing the risk of enamel erosion.
- Sugary snacks, including candy corn, cookies, and cake, all contain high amounts of sugar, which can cause tooth decay.
- Sugar-free lollipops and hard candies stimulate saliva, which can help prevent dry mouth.
- Sugar-free gum can actually prevent cavities as it not only dislodges food particles from between the teeth but also increases saliva—which works to neutralize the acids of the mouth and prevent tooth decay.
- Dark chocolate and its antioxidants, according to some studies, can be good for the heart and may even lower blood pressure.
Regardless of the type of candy you and your family indulge in, ensure that you maintain a proper oral health regimen that includes: brushing your teeth 3 times daily, using a fluoride mouthwash prior to bedtime, flossing between your teeth after eating candy and at least once a day.
From all of us at Whispering Pines Dental, we hope you are your family have a Happy Halloween!
Dr. Julie Pruneski is the dentist and owner of Whispering Pines Dental at 690 Cooper Foster Park Road in Lorain. To reserve an appointment with Dr. Pruneski call 440-282-2023. Check out Whispering Pines Dental online at www.whisperingpinesdental.com and on facebook at www.facebook.com/whisperingpinesdental.