Happy Halloween Boo-ville! Candy and Your Teeth

Happy Halloween Boo-ville!

Halloween is one of the most enjoyed holidays around – especially for kids, and especially for Belleville!  As every Belleville resident knows, every month of October, the downtown of Belleville magically transforms into Boo-ville! Main Street is beautified with spooky and fun decorations.  Standing in front of the lamp posts you will see wonderfully creative scarecrows made by families in Belleville competing for the title of the most unique.   And let’s not forget the main attraction of Halloween —- the candy!

Candy may be thought to be the ‘natural enemy’ of the dentist, but my wife and I actually joined the other businesses on Main Street this year and passed out candy to the thousands of kids and families who patron our wonderful downtown (we also passed out toothbrushes!).  Candy and sweets can be enjoyed without worrying about rotting your teeth out or causing damage — with just a few guidelines:

  1. If you are going to eat candy and snacks, it is better to do so in one sitting, rather than grazing throughout the day!  Meaning it is better to have 5 pieces of candy after dinner, as opposed to 1 piece of candy as a snack every hour for 5 hours.  This is because, eating sweets creates an acidic environment in your mouth (which hurts your teeth).  If you are only eating candy the 1 time, you create the acidic environment 1 time.  But if you eat it 5 times, you are creating the harmful acidic environment 5 times!
  2. Be careful with hard candies!  Hard candies like jawbreakers or gobstoppers can be prime culprits for breaking teeth.  In fact, today I treated a patient who did indeed split a tooth in half eating a hard Halloween candy.  Most hard candies are meant to be savored until they dissolve and not bit directly into while it is still hard.  Keep that in mind before you crunch down on a hard candy.
  3. Brush, floss, and rinse! This one is a given.  If you are going to enjoy sweet snacks you should definitely brush, floss, and rinse your teeth with a fluoride (or at least water) mouth rinse to cleanse your teeth of left over sugar.  We love to eat sugar, but so do the bacteria which cause cavities.  Sucrose (one of the main sugars in candy) is the favorite snack for decay causing bacteria in your mouth.

 

Happy Halloween, and thank you to all who visited us this year on Halloween!