The Trick to Treats at Halloween

10-26-13There’s a reason that many jack-o-lanterns are toothless. It’s the result of all of that Halloween candy!

The trick to treats at Halloween time is to try not to overindulge and to religiously employ your dental hygiene program following your treats.

Obviously, my recommendation is to let The Smile Routine do the job for you, but any effort to protect your teeth following a treat assault is a good thing.

Here are my picks for a quick fix following Halloween sugar madness:

  1. Rinse your mouth with water. If you fall head first into a bag of candy and brushing your teeth isn’t convenient, simply spend a minute or two rinsing your mouth with water immediately after. Sugar stimulates plaque-producing bacteria in your mouth. Rinsing your mouth with water after exposing your teeth to massive amounts of sugar will reduce and slow plaque production.
  2. Avoid hard and sticky candy that stay in your mouth for a long time or cling to your teeth. Besides how often you snack, the length of time sugary food is in your mouth plays a role in tooth decay. Candies that stay in your mouth for a long period of time subject teeth to an increased risk for tooth decay. 
  3. Chew sugarless gum. Chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes will help defend your teeth, because increased saliva flow helps wash out food and neutralize the acid produced by dental plaque bacteria.
  4. Eat Halloween candy and other sugary foods with meals or shortly after mealtime. Saliva production increases during meals and helps cancel out acids produced by bacteria in your mouth and helps rinse away food particles.
  5. Don’t go to bed without brushing. Rumor has it that the day after Halloween has one of the worst ratings for bad breath — did you know that? You’re exhausted and drained from a day of excitement, parties, and sugar excess! As difficult as it may be, do not go to bed without brushing your teeth. Be a warrior — take three minutes and get the job done. The rest of humankind will thank you.

Keep in mind that the mindset to consistently put your oral hygiene first on tough days like Halloween will ensure that your smile will be great anytime during the year.

Thanks for sharing a smile!
Happy smiling,
D.L.

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