Jones Smiles - October 2019

REPORT THE WELLNESS Treat Your Teeth • How to Enjoy Halloween While Protecting Your Smile 770-965-3048

• October 2019

W hile it felt like the summer heat would never end, it’s officially fall! For our family, that means college football, pumpkin patches, the corn maze, and my kids’ favorite, Halloween. Whether this Halloween finds you giving out candy or shepherding a flock of little ones from door to door, I hope you enjoy all the festivities, costumes, and sweets. Speaking of sweets, let’s be honest: No child likes going to the dentist’s house who gives out apples or floss

candy usually achieves that sour taste by altering the pH of the candy. Some of the super sour varieties, like Warheads, have a pH in the 1.6–1.8 range. That’s just slightly less acidic than battery acid! Acidic candies begin to soften the enamel, and when paired with high sugar contents, the risk of cavities or damage to the teeth is much higher! Timing is everything. It is best to eat candy (and other sugary foods) with meals or shortly after mealtime. This is due to the increase in protective saliva production during meals. Saliva helps to neutralize acids produced by cavity-causing bacteria as well as wash away food particles. Avoid sweet snacks. if you keep snacking from the candy bowl! Instead, look for tooth- and body-healthy snacks like fresh fruit, nuts, and even cheese. Drink more water. Drinking fluoridated water can help prevent tooth decay, prevent dry mouth, and assist in washing away food particles. If you choose bottled water, look for kinds that are fluoridated. Stay away from sugary beverages. This includes soda, sports drinks, and flavored waters. When teeth come in frequent contact with beverages that contain sugar, the risk of tooth decay is increased. Many of these beverages are also very acidic, which further softens teeth. Chew gum with the ADA seal. Chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after meals helps reduce tooth decay, because increased saliva flow helps wash away food and neutralize the acid Snacking can increase your risk of cavities due to the more frequent exposure to carbohydrates and sugar, especially

samples! So, as for our home, we will be giving out candy, and I’ll certainly snack on some myself. To help you sort through the trick-or-treat loot without feeling any dental guilt, I’ve included a rundown of some common candies and their effect on your teeth, as well as a few tips for this Halloween season: Chocolate As far as teeth are concerned,

chocolate is probably the most smile-friendly treat in your bag. Chocolate is more easily washed away and dissolved from the teeth, and dark chocolate also contains much less sugar than other candies. Hard Candy Hard candies have a high potential for causing cavities due to your tendency to suck on these treats for longer periods of time. This essentially causes a “sugar bath” for your teeth that cavity-causing bacteria can feast on. If you do eat hard candies, try not to suck on them for long periods of time. Sticky and Gummy Candies Aside from the high sugar content, sticky and gummy candies tend to accumulate in the pits and grooves of teeth. These are some of the biggest culprits for decay, especially for kids! Try to limit these treats, and ensure your little ones are brushing properly, especially if have a sweet tooth for these kinds of candy. Sour Candy You might want to pass on things that make you pucker — especially sticky candies that are coated in sugar! Sour

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