Stores are full of Halloween candy, and the rest of the sugary treats of the holiday season will soon be upon us. So how do you protect your and your children’s teeth from decay without spoiling everyone’s fun? At Redwood Dental Smiles, we have some solutions, but first, we wanted to explain more about how tooth decay works.
While consuming highly sugary snacks isn’t good for you, the amount of time teeth are exposed to sugar is the more relevant factor to decay than the sugar content of any particular thing. The riskiest Halloween candies for teeth are hard candies, which are sucked on for a long time, and toffees, which get caught in between teeth. But other risks come from drinks such as apple cider and creamy lattes, which will leave sugary residue on teeth if drunk slowly, and from high-starch vegetables such as winter squash.
Brushing after eating sugar is the best way to prevent tooth decay, but this is sometimes unfeasible. Another tactic is to only eat candy with meals, when the body is already producing a lot of saliva. Saliva helps to wash residue off the teeth, as does water, so drink plenty of it. Sugar-free gum can also be used to dislodge food debris and remove some sugar.
Redwood Dental Smiles is operated by Dr. Vijay Munagala at 20212 Redwood Rd, Suite 101, Castro Valley, California, 64546. To schedule an appointment, visit Redwood Dental Smiles or call 510-886-6416.