4 Dental Tips for Halloween
Halloween is right around the corner and hopefully you’ve already got all of your kid’s costumes lined up for a night of fun! Our Aspen Dental dentists, Dr. Nishimura and Dr. Rossow, know that Halloween can’t truly be Halloween without candy, but realize that a few easy tricks can be implemented to help prevent problems caused by those sugary treats down the road.
Perfect Time to Educate Your Kids
Halloween is the perfect time to have a conversation with your kids about the importance of good oral health and about what foods are important for a healthy mouth. Instead of insisting that candy is bad, tell your children that eating too much candy and other sweets is not good for their oral and overall health. Monitor your child’s eating habits throughout the night of trick-or-treating and reiterate some of these points, if needed.
Moderation is Key
Halloween is that one special day of the year where we encourage our children to dress up and to be whomever or whatever they wish to be. It’s a day for our children to enjoy and that’s why it’s important to remember not to deprive them, but to educate them, because let’s be honest, candy is a big part of all of the fun. If you take your kid’s candy away upon returning from trick-or-treating, that is a sure way to cause more problems – they may try to continually sneak candy or eat too much at once. It’s a better idea to let them enjoy their candy, but in moderation.
When you return from a night of treat-or-treating, sit down with your kids and go through their stash with them. Allow them to choose a few pieces that they are allowed to eat at that time and for the next few days. The next step is to put the rest of the candy out of sight. You can opt to donate the remaining candy – there are many organizations that will graciously accept the donation, such as Operation Gratitude – or you can save it for a special occasion.
Instead of giving your kids the opportunity to dig into their Halloween stash whenever they please, set a “Treat Time” to teach kids that sweet should be eaten in moderation. When you give your children a specific time to enjoy those sugary treats, they’re less likely to ask for it at all times of the day.
Create a Brush & Floss Rule
It’s also very important to remind your kids to brush and floss their teeth after digging into their Halloween candy. For younger children, you will have to lend a hand and help to brush his/her teeth. For older kids, you may have to supervise to make certain that he/she is properly brushing and flossing their teeth. Creating a rule that compels children to brush/floss after eating sweets will help to enhance brushing/flossing education and will make it more fun, too!
Dr. Nishimura, Dr. Rossow and the Apsen Dental, a private practice of Cherry Creek in Denver, CO want our young patients to enjoy this fun time of year, but we also want all of our patients to learn how to properly care for their teeth and to have a healthy mouth for the rest of their lives. Happy Halloween!