The month of October has arrived and Halloween will be haunting parents and dentists again. Apart from Christmas and birthdays, Halloween is a favorite with children – it is their excuse to treat themselves with lots of candies and chocolates. Parents, on the other hand, have to find some tricks to maintain their children’s dental health at this time of the year.
Here are some tips that may be useful for all the little witches and wizards out there to keep their teeth safe from cavities:
- Choose the type of candies carefully
Avoid consuming soft, sticky and gooey candies such as caramels that can linger in the child’s mouth for long periods of time – give them candies/chocolates that can melt quickly.
- Avoid snacking on candies
It is best to give children a treat with or after meals when saliva is still plentiful in the mouth to wash away the sugars and acids which may lead to cavities.
- Provide Alternatives
Apart from limiting intake of candies and chocolates, provide healthy snacks as an alternative, such as cheese and vegetables (e.g. carrot sticks, fruits). If the child still needs a sweet fix, give sugar-free candies.
- Encourage Children to Brush and Floss Regularly After Meals
Children like to imitate their parents or older siblings. Thus, be good role models when it comes to establishing good oral habits, such as brushing and flossing regularly after meals, rinsing, or drinking a glass of water after candy consumption.
- Regular Visits to See a Dentist/Paedodontist
One of the ways to prevent or minimize cavities is to ensure that your child sees the dentist/paedodontist regularly for their dental check-up. In certain cases, the dentist or paedodontist will put fissure sealants on the teeth in order to prevent further decay.
- Parents should also remember to have their dentists’ phone number handy in case of any emergencies.
Happy Halloween… and you can maintain your kids’ smile and teeth to be spectacular…. not “spooktacular” …