You might have heard that Halloween candy and your teeth can be a bad combination. Here’s why candy can be bad for your teeth and some healthier options for celebrating the holiday with delicious and spooky treats!
How Does Candy Affect Your Teeth?
The reason why candy can be bad for your teeth is because of the high sugar content. Sugar by itself isn’t bad for your teeth, but when it combines with your saliva, it reacts with the naturally occurring bacteria in your mouth and produces an acid.
Normally, your mouth has a healthy balanced pH, but when too much sugar is introduced, it can create an acidic environment that is erosive to your dental enamel (the outer layer of your teeth). Over time, this can cause small holes to form in the surface of your teeth, which are called cavities.
Candy for a Healthier Smile
The good news is that not every type of Halloween candy and your teeth are a bad combination! Some candy is sugar-free. It might contain alternatives to sugar that don’t affect your teeth negatively. One of our favorite alternatives to sugar is xylitol.
Xylitol is special because it can actually benefit your teeth. Unlike sugar, using xylitol over time can actually help to reduce the likelihood of cavities developing. We can’t think of anything sweeter!
If you still want to enjoy sugary candy on Halloween, that’s ok! Just make sure to enjoy it in moderation and to brush and floss your teeth well afterwards. If everyone isn’t able to brush right away, keep some water on hand to drink to help wash away the sugar.
Alternative Halloween Treats
Trick-or-treating doesn’t have to be all about sweet treats! There are lots of alternatives that can be even more fun than Halloween candy and your teeth will thank you!
Instead of candy, try handing out small glow-in-the-dark bouncy balls, toys, games, stickers, spooky masks, or alternative treats like bags of healthy flavored popcorn!
Call our Phoenix Dental Office to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.