October 30, 2023 - Ottawa, ON: Dentists don’t worry too much about ghouls, goblins and zombies, because excess sugar and cavities are the true tricksters of Halloween. Thankfully, we have compiled some healthy Halloween tips so you can trick-or-treat while protecting your teeth tomorrow.
“Halloween is a spooktacular time for children and the young at heart to dress up and have fun,” says CDA President, Dr. Heather Carr. “Following a few simple tips can help prevent cavities and keep the treats from turning tricky.”
Reducing the intake of gummy and chewy candies, as well as hard candies and lollipops, can help minimize the chances of getting cavities. Tooth decay increases when teeth are exposed to sugar for long periods of time. The risk of getting cavities also increases when treats get stuck between teeth, or when it takes long to dissolve. Candies that dissolve quickly, such as plain chocolate, are a better choice.
Here are some mouth-healthy strategies you can follow during Halloween:
- Eat candy after a meal. This helps reduce the amount of candy consumed in a single sitting as tummies are already full.
- Drink water after eating candy to help wash away the sugar left on the teeth.
- Chew sugar-free gum after eating candy. This produces saliva that washes away the sugar left on teeth.
- Swap-out some candy from your trick-or-treating bag for a toy or a fun outing. This will create fun memories that may last well beyond a single evening.
“By avoiding certain types of candy, drinking water after enjoying treats, and brushing and flossing regularly, you can help keep cavities at bay this Halloween and beyond,” adds Dr. Carr. “Stay safe and let’s keep the boo in Halloween from becoming boo-hoo-hoo down the line.”
One of the best ways to protect your mouth is by going to the dentist for regular visits and dental cleanings. Your dentist will check for dental problems and remove unhealthy buildup to reduce your risk of decay or gum disease.
- Child Cavities: 57% of 6-11 year olds and 59% of 12–19 year olds have or have had a cavity.
- Adult Cavities: 96% of adults have a history with cavities, even though cavities are largely preventable.
- Flossing: Only 28% percent of Canadians floss at least 5 times a week.
- Sugar: Children aged 2-8 consume 101 grams of sugar each day, while children aged 9-18 have 115 grams of sugar daily.
Media Relations Specialist
Canadian Dental Association
About the Canadian Dental Association
The Canadian Dental Association (CDA) is the national voice for dentistry dedicated to the promotion of optimal oral health, an essential component of general health, and to the advancement and leadership of a unified profession. CDA, a non-regulatory authority, is a federally incorporated not-for-profit organization whose corporate members are Canada's provincial and territorial dental associations (PTDAs). CDA represents over 21,000 practicing dentists from coast to coast to coast.