(BPT) - While Halloween will be different this year, you'll still likely be enjoying all your favorite Halloween candies — at least from the comfort of your own home. And face it, it's not just kids who like to indulge in sweet treats.
While enjoying your favorite sticky candy and sugary chocolate bars, you don’t want to be frightened by the prospect of cavities or other issues with your teeth. Oral health is an important part of staying healthy overall, so to help you and your family maintain proper oral care during the Halloween season and beyond, ARM & HAMMER Toothpastes has partnered with dental expert Dr. Derek Wallin, DDS to share his tips:
1. Stick to regular routines — so candy won't stick to teeth
Especially after taking some — and then probably a few more — bites of Halloween candy, don’t skip your nightly routine. Though the extra time at home may have you in your PJs throughout the day and night (no judgment!), remember to brush your teeth at least twice a day, and especially after dipping into the Halloween stash. To ensure that you are brushing long enough, set a timer on your phone for two minutes while you brush your teeth thoroughly from top to bottom, front and back. Never skip brushing before going to bed, as the cavity-causing bacteria that live in mouths can do a lot of damage while you're sleeping.
2. Be choosy about Halloween candy … and when you eat it
Not all candy is created equal, at least where your teeth are concerned. You probably guessed it: Candies that stick on and between teeth are the worst culprits. For example, taffy and gummy candies leave a sugary residue that’s hard to reach when it gets stuck between teeth and under gums. Chocolate or sugar-free candies are less damaging to your teeth and lead to less plaque buildup. Whatever type of candy you indulge in this Halloween season, enjoy it in moderation, and avoid hitting the candy stash after your nightly brushing.
3. Don't brush immediately after eating
You may be surprised to hear that it's better to wait a while after you've finished eating to brush your teeth. Your mouth has a higher acidity level right after eating, especially when you’ve been eating candy. Brushing while your teeth are more acidic can wear down and dissolve tooth enamel quickly, so it's best to wait 30 minutes after eating, if you can. One extra pro tip: Before you brush, swish with a mouthful of water to reduce any acid buildup and to help minimize damage to your enamel.
4. Use effective toothpaste
Using great quality toothpaste when you brush can help keep your teeth and gums healthy, even when you occasionally enjoy sweets. Apart from a good toothbrush, I recommend using ARM & HAMMER Toothpastes because they are made with 100% natural baking soda to naturally whiten teeth while quickly neutralizing acidity and restoring a more natural, balanced pH in your mouth to keep your teeth strong. The latest ARM & HAMMER Essentials Toothpastes are made with more of the essential ingredients you need for a healthy, beautiful smile, including naturally sourced calcium and essential oils sourced from natural North American peppermint to freshen breath. Overall, they’re a great option for those searching for a simple and clean toothpaste solution — even better, they’re efficacious, budget-friendly and come in three varieties.
Following these tips and tricks can take some of the fright out of this Halloween's sugary treats.