Halloween and your child’s teeth!
Halloween Treats vs. Cavities: Don’t Make Kids Choose
Don’t deny your children the Halloween experience. That can send the entirely wrong message — deprivation — and make treats seem even more irresistible, leading to other problems. They may end up sneaking sweets or eating too much candy once they’re out on their own. Instead, let them have the joy of Halloween in all its sticky goodness and the experience of going to a party or trick-or-treating.
After your children get back from trick-or-treating or a party, go through their bags of Halloween candy together. Tell them to each pick the 10 or so (whatever number you decide, based on factors such as age) treats they want the most. Avoid the very sticky sweets as these will stay on the teeth longer and do more damage!
Get the unpicked treats out of sight. You can donate them to a food bank or freeze them if you can’t bear to throw them out.
Letting children help decide what is a reasonable amount of treats to keep has benefits beyond good oral health. The message isn’t “candy is bad,” but that candy and other sweets, in excess, can lead to cavities. Children learn two important lessons:
1)How to control their diets
2)That what they eat relates to oral health, not just physical health
It is also a great opportunity to ‘brush up’ on their tooth-brushing skills!
– Use a pea-sized dab of ad fluoride toothpaste. Take care that your child does not swallow the toothpaste.
– Using a soft-bristled toothbrush, brush the inside surface of each tooth first, where plaque may accumulate most. Brush gently back and forth.
– Clean the outer surfaces of each tooth. Angle the brush along the outer gum-line. Gently brush back and forth.
– Brush the chewing surface of each tooth. Gently brush back and forth.
– Use the tip of the brush to clean behind each front tooth, both top and bottom.
– It’s always fun to brush the tongue!
From the age of two we recommend dental visits. These should be fun and involve counting teeth and teaching with aids. Prevention is key!
Happy Halloween from all at Cork Dental Clinic