Believe it or not, some dentists say that it is okay to let your kids gorge on Halloween candy because it is not the amount of candy that a kid eats that causes cavities. It is the timing. In other words, eating a big wad of candy all at once is not as bad for your teeth as spreading the candy out over several hours or days.
That is because eating carbohydrates (candy) changes the pH balance of your mouth, Your mouth produces more acid, which eats at your teeth. And this causes cavities, So each time you pop a piece of candy into your mouth, you create an acid environment in your mouth which takes an hour to go away.
So if you spread the candy out , and let your kids pop a piece of candy into their mouths every hour, all you are doing is creating acid in their mouths that lasts all day. But if they gorge and eat all the candy they can stuff into their mouths, two things will happen. They will get sick of candy real fast. And the acid in their mouth won’t last all day, it will go away in an hour.
Mark Helpin, the acting chair of pediatric dentistry at Temple’s Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry says, “So, if I eat a piece of candy now, the pH in my mouth will become acidic, and it will take 30-60 minutes for it to become normal.”If I keep eating candy throughout the day, there is acid in my mouth for a much longer period of time. The longer teeth are in an acid environment, the greater the risk they will become decayed.”
Helpin also offers some other tips about how to deal with kids and Halloween candy. These tips include:
Meals are a good time too have treats as dessert because the saliva increases, which washes away acidity in the mouth.
Encourage children to brush their teeth after eating candy. If that’s not possible, have children rinse their mouth with water three or four times after eating, which reduces acidity .
Substituting small bags of chips or pretzels for candy doesn’t solve the cavity problem, because they are also carbohydrates and also create an acid environment.. “These treats and snacks get stuck on your teeth, and that’s the stickiness factor,” Helpin said.
Encourage sugar-free candies, and avoid the sticky, gummy candies.
Temple University (2016, October 17). Never Fear: It May Be OK To Let Your Kids Gorge On Candy This Halloween. ScienceDaily. Retrieved