Chicago dentist shares tips for a healthier Halloween

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Halloween is synonymous with dressing up and gorging on sweet treats. Although nobody wants to be a party-pooper, this time of year is notoriously precarious for dentists, and many are trying to offer tips to help patients be a little more health-conscious this Halloween. Chicago dentist, Dr Mary Hayes, has set out to alert parents to some “less worse” seasonal treats.

Dr Hayes said that many children tend to indulge over the Halloween period as a result of going to parties and trick or treating, and this can put them at risk of decay. When you eat sugary foods, there’s a period of time when your enamel weakens and the teeth are very vulnerable. If you’re grazing all the time, it’s impossible for the enamel to recover. There are also some treats that are more damaging than others, according to Dr Hayes, a spokesperson for the American Dental Association. Chocolate, for example, is preferable to sweets because it washes off the teeth quickly and easily and it contains oils that reduce the activity of decay-causing bacteria. Dark chocolate is the best option for the teeth. Caramel was up there with the worst offenders with gummy sweets and chewy candy.

To minimise the impact of Halloween treats, Dr Hayes recommends twice-daily cleaning, no snacking between meals, drinking water after eating and chewing sugar-free gum (for adults and older children).

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