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Halloween Candy and Your Teeth

shutterstock_482851483It’s one of our favorite times of the year here at Quince Orchard Dental Care. We have decorated the office and are counting down to Halloween which comes with its ghosts, goblins and goodies. Among all the fun and the frolic, what is to be kept in mind is that the sugar in those treats can play some unwanted tricks on your teeth if you’re not careful.

 

The bacteria in your mouth are probably more excited to eat Halloween candy than you are. When these microorganisms eat the sugar and leftover food in your mouth, they produce a weak acid that is a primary cause of cavities.

 

But don’t hang up your costume just yet. “Halloween is about candy, dressing up and having fun,” says our Pediatric Dentist Dr. Abdillahi. “It’s OK to splurge on candy this Halloween as long as you’re brushing twice a day and flossing once a day all year long.”

 

To help you sort through the trick-or-treat bag loot, Quince Orchard Dental Care has a rundown of some common candies and their impact on your teeth:

 

Chocolate
Chocolate is probably your best bet, which is good because it’s also the most popular kind of candy handed out on Halloween. “Chocolate is one of the better candies because it washes off your teeth easier than other types of candy,” Dr. Rouhanian says. “Dark chocolate also has less sugar than milk chocolate.”

 

Sticky and Gummy Candies
Be picky if it’s sticky. These are some of the worst candies for your teeth. “This candy is harder to remove and may stay longer on your teeth, which gives that cavity-causing bacteria more time to work,” says our Orthodontist Dr. Hagan.

 

Hard Candy
Hard candies are also ones to watch on Halloween. “They can actually break your teeth if you’re not careful”, says our Pediatric Dentist Dr. Lewis. “You also tend to keep these kinds of candies in your mouth for longer periods of time so the sugar is getting in your saliva and washing over your teeth.”

 

Sour Candy
You might want to pass on things that make you pucker – especially if they are sticky and coated in sugar. “Sour candy can be very acidic,” says Dr. Plesset. “And that acidity can weaken and damage the hard outer shell of your teeth, making your teeth more vulnerable to cavities.”

 

Popcorn Balls
Have some floss handy if you’re enjoying one of these fall favorites. “Kernels can get stuck in-between your teeth,” says our Endodontist Dr. Khalili. “They are also sticky, sugary and can be hard.”