Effective Oral Health Care Tips for Your Trick-Or-Treaters
Children look forward to Hallowe’en each year with great excitement. They have fun choosing their costumes and pretending to be someone else for an evening. What type of persona will they decide to be this year? Will they decide to be someone based in everyday life like a doctor or a firefighter, or is the year to dress up like a superhero, princess, or even a Ninja turtle? Along with the costumes, the other part of Hallowe’en that trick or treaters look forward to is receiving a variety of candy. Getting all that sweet stuff doesn’t have to put your children’s oral health care at risk, as long as you keep these tips in mind:
1. Do allow your children to enjoy some of their Hallowe’en candy after trick or treating, but keep in mind that sugary sweets tend to get stuck between teeth after eating. Remind your trick or treaters that they need to brush their teeth thoroughly before going to bed.
2. Good oral care includes regular flossing, and this is just as important after going out on October 31 as on any other night. Chewy candies, nuts, and taffy also tends to get stuck in between teeth, and it can be difficult to get all the remnants of the candy out. Along with sliding the floss between the teeth, use it in an up and down motion to dislodge any stray candy pieces or nuts. If your child has braces, he or she should not be eating hard or chewy candies or nuts. Chocolate is a better choice for a Hallowe’en treat.
3. The time of day that your children are eating their Hallowe’en candies matters to their oral health as well. Offer them a snack that isn’t quite so sugar-laden after school and save the candy for after their evening meal. There is a good reason for this strategy; after meals, the mouth has extra saliva which helps to get rid of acids and bacteria, which can lead to cavities.
This annual celebration doesn’t have to mean that your children need to neglect their oral health. They can enjoy their treats and continue to look after their teeth.
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