Halloween is less than 24 hours away, and it’s important to make sure you have practices outlined so that you and your children make good choices this Halloween season. With the mounds of candies that children can collect, it is a good idea to separate which ones can be an occasional treat and which should be given away.

Candies like gummies and taffies are the worst, as they are sticky and will break down the enamel via acids. Candies like chocolates are the best because they dissolve easily and can be washed away with saliva and by rinsing out the mouth. The longer that candies like Jolly Ranchers and Laffy Taffy stay in the mouth the more time bacteria has to build up in the enamel. These candies are designed to be chewed on for long periods of time, but unless they are sugar-free they pose a big risk to your children. Some other tips to enjoy Halloween include:

Drink more water. Drinking fluoridated water, or simply a sugar-free liquid, can help prevent tooth decay. Water may be the best choice, but a rinse for your teeth is of the utmost importance.

Maintain a healthy diet. Despite the fact that many children choose to pig out on Halloween, this can upset the body, which is a carefully regulated machine. Make sure your kids eat all of their meals and don’t starve themselves in anticipation of candy.

Avoid beverages with added sugar or sweeteners. When teeth come in frequent contact with beverages that contain sugar, the risk of tooth decay is increased. Additionally, artificial sweeteners are as bad as natural sugar if not worse, and do not break down easily.

Brush and floss the teeth. Wait thirty minutes after all candy has been ingested to ensure you are not scraping abrasives across the enamel, and then brush your child’s teeth extremely well with the right amount of toothpaste. Flossing is especially important tonight, because these candies can get stuck between the teeth for a while and toothbrush bristles will be unable to reach them.

Halloween can be a fun time for families, especially with little kids who are excited. But if you are worried about your child’s health on Halloween, call our office so we can give you more tips for this holiday. You want to celebrate, but your dental health should come first.