Halloween is tomorrow! It's the holiday that's centered around jack-o-lanterns, costumes, trick or treating, and of course, lots and lots of CANDY. It often seems as though our little monsters want to scarf up the entire bucket of Halloween candy that very first night. But what's a mom to do? Let them eat it? Hide it? Throw it all out when they're not watching?
We decided to crowd source at our very favorite dentist office, Pediatric Dental Care, and have their staff weigh in on their opinions! The four dentists ended up going down memory lane about this fun holiday and their answers just may surprise you:
What's your favorite Halloween memory?
Dr. John Acosta - "My favorite Halloween memory was actually trick or treating at Graceland when Elvis was still living." (Ummm, pause. Can we just take a moment to reflect on just how cool that is?! Whoah.)
Dr. Jacob Stegeman - "My parents bought me an adult Darth Vader costume to wear as a five-year-old. Basically, it looked like a floating mask attached to a cape. But it came with a lightsaber and I thought the whole outfit was amazing."
Dr. David Langford - "Dressing up as a Jedi Knight and trick-or-treating with my dad."
(Pause again. It's amazing how Star Wars has continued to be popular costumes generation after generation!)
Dr. Corey Acosta - "My dad, Dr. John Acosta, face painting myself and my brother for our Dracula and werewolf costumes."
What’s your favorite Halloween candy?
Dr. John Acosta - "Kit Kats!"
Dr. Jacob Stegeman - "Reese’s" (Smart man that Dr. Stegeman is!)
Dr. David Langford - "Twix, Crunch Bar, and all varieties of M&M’s."
Dr. Corey Acosta - "Sour Patch Kids are probably my favorite!"
Is sugar really that bad for your kids' teeth?
Dr. John Acosta - "In a nut shell, yes. Simply put, sugar causes cavities! But so can other things -- especially sweet beverages like gatorades, soda pop, and fruit punches -- all the party drinks! Just remember, everything in moderation!"
Dr. Jacob Stegeman - "Sugar is bad for your teeth because it feeds the bacteria in your mouth, which produces acid. This acid attacks your tooth enamel, the protective outer layer of your teeth. Over time, this leads to cavities, tooth decay, and a host of other dental problems."
Are there any candies that are worse for your teeth than others?
Dr. John Acosta - "Most anything hard or sticky (and yes gummy vitamins are included in this category)!"
Dr. David Langford - "The worst candies are those that are sticky, such as lollipops, candy corn, and caramel, because they tend to do just that: stick all over your teeth. If you don't brush the pieces out, the bacteria we talked about earlier will attack the candy left in your mouth!"
Dr. Jacob Stegeman - "Anything chewy, like Dr. Acosta's favorite Sour Patch Kids or even gummy fruit snacks, linger in your mouth!"
Dr. Corey Acosta -- "Like the others said, anything sticky or chewy is the worst. Chocolates are the better choice when it comes to candy options. Good news for chocolate lovers!"
Are there any best practices around eating Halloween candy that you would recommend?
Dr. John Acosta - "Enjoy Halloween! Unless you have already set guidelines for your kids in place, let them have the candy! I suggest rationing it out in baggies and giving it to your kids as you see fit. I like the idea of having a little bit every day for awhile after Halloween, but it's up to the parents and their comfort level. Don't feel guilty if you choose to just throw it all away either! Plus, there's always the “parent tax” -- claiming those candies you love too!"
Dr. David Langford - "Absolutely enjoy Halloween, including the candy! However, in order to reduce the dental risk, it is best to choose candies that are lower in sugar and do not stick to your teeth. You should also brush your teeth after eating candy to remove any sugar residue.
Dr. Jacob Stegeman - "Try to brush your teeth after eating candy as soon as possible to remove any sugar residue. I recommend not packing candy in lunch boxes but waiting to eat the treats at home, where you're more likely to be able to brush afterwards!"
Dr. Corey Acosta - "Kids will be kids. Let them enjoy their favorite candies! It would be best to let them know they can have the candy for a couple of days, then get rid of it."
So, after all is said and done, the dentists at Pediatric Dental Care DO approve of Halloween candy! Yay! Just remember to have your kids brush those pearly whites after they consume all the sugars so that their teeth stay healthy!
Pediatric Dental Care of Memphis takes both the child’s and the parents’ feelings into account when we provide dental care. You are free to accompany your child through every part of their dental visit. Our kid-friendly demeanor helps children feel at ease and using age-appropriate language allows them understand what is going on. We encourage and teach children how to care for their teeth in order to establish a solid foundation for a beautiful smile for a lifetime. PDC has 4 Pediatric Dentists on staff and two locations to choose from.
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Or head straight to their website to learn more about their dental services offered
You can also make an appointment by calling the White Station location 901-560-4386
or Kirby Center Cove location 901-363-8192