Tis the season for costumes, cool nights and cavities…yikes! Halloween can be an exciting holiday for the kiddies, but the weeks following the fun-filled day can be a nightmare for parents. A couple of weeks after Halloween those yummy, gooey, sugary treats are now wreaking havoc on your child’s mouth. There are, however, a few things you can do to stop the cavity madness.
Just say no!
After a night of trotting the streets for treats, dump the candy on the table and remove anything that is sticky and gooey, like gummies or caramel. I know what you are thinking, “That’s the good stuff!”. Yes my friend that’s what your child’s teeth are saying also. Sticky candy is harder to remove from the teeth and easily wedges between the teeth causing tiny moist, sugar pockets. Bacteria thrive off of warm, moist, sweet environments. An added bonus is that the displaced sugar will slowly eat away at the enamel between the teeth, causing pain that no amount of Children’s Tylenol or Motrin can relieve.
Reuse and Repurpose!
There are loads of recipes that require various sugary treats. On a cool fall day, use some of your candy treasures in cooking projects that require a touch of sweetness. Hit up Pinterest for a few ideas for Thanksgiving and Christmas delicacies. Store the candy in the fridge or freezer to keep it fresh. Pinterest also has a fabulous board full of fun Healthy Halloween Recipes. http://www.pinterest.com/healthykids/kids-healthy-halloween/
Brush, Floss, Brush, Repeat!
So if your child must indulge in all of the candies Halloween has to offer, you must, you must, you must–you must not forget to brush. Usually I would say encourage, but in this instance I will use a stronger word—DEMAND. Demand that your child brushes and flosses his or her teeth in the morning and again at night. It is also good to use a mouthwash to rinse away stubborn particles that get between the teeth. Don’t forget to update your family calendar every six months with dentist appointments for the whole family.
Be healthy. Be safe.