There’s a monster living your child’s mouth. Its name is Streptococcus, and it’s ready to wreak havoc on your child’s teeth this Halloween.
Streptococcus is a bacteria that craves and feeds on sugar on your teeth. As the bacteria eats, the sugar is broken down into acids. It’s these acids that eat away at tooth enamel, causing cavities.
We know Halloween is a fun time for your kids and we wouldn’t want to take that away. But there are steps you can take to prevent Streptococcus from ruining your child’s pearly whites on October 31st and after.
- Carry smaller treat bags. Your child’s goal may be to fill their bag to overflowing. Give your child a small bag and he’ll have less to fill. Keep the old pillowcases at home.
- Wait until meal time. Store candy out of reach so your child isn’t bingeing throughout the day. Bring the Halloween basket out after lunch or dinner. Your child produces more saliva during meals, which helps wash away bad bacteria and food particles. That saliva will still continue to rinse teeth as they munch on candy for dessert.
- Sip water. Encourage your child to swish water in their mouths after eating candy. It’s filled with fluoride which strengthens teeth and prevents cavities.
- Brush the bugs away. On Halloween night, make sure your child takes extra time to brush, floss and rinse with a fluoride mouthwash. In fact, any time your child eats candy, ask them to brush immediately after.
- Trade candy for a toy or game. Trade sugary sweets for something your child wants like a new video game or a trip to an arcade. You’ll keep Halloween fun, but take away candy in exchange for a different kind of treat.
Remember to schedule regular checkups twice a year to maintain your child’s oral health year-round.
Have a safe and happy Halloween!