When it comes to our children’s teeth, Halloween is one of the worst holidays. With all the emphasis on sugar filled sweets and cakes it’s a recipe for tooth decay and toothache on 1st November. However, Halloween can still be fun, and tooth friendly too, with a combination of tooth-friendly treats and great Halloween ideas that don’t revolve around sugar.
Sugar free treats
A better alternative to sweets that are filled with sugar, sugar free treats can also help to stimulate the saliva that we need to help remove bacteria and keep our mouths clean.
This might sound surprising but chocolate is actually a better alternative to sweets on Halloween. Chocolate dissolves more quickly and so doesn’t hang around in the mouth, coating teeth. Dark chocolate contains antioxidants and milk chocolate may also contain calcium that could be beneficial. Steer clear of chocolate with toffee or other sticky substances as these are a dental nightmare.
Ok, so no child is likely to turn down a handful of sweets for an apple. However, apple bobbing is a traditional Halloween game and a great way to get kids to take a couple of bites of an apple in between all the sweeter stuff. Apples can help to remove decay-causing bacteria from teeth that sweets leave behind, and eating even a few apply bites will help to stimulate essential saliva. Plus, apple bobbing is fun and very simple to organise.
It’s amazing how easy it is to disguise a piece of fruit by making it look like a lollipop! Try making fruit pops with frozen fruit juice or even whole fruit, such as bananas, and hand these out at a Halloween party or to Trick Or Treaters instead of sweets.
Although sweets and chocolates are the traditional Halloween treats there are plenty of savoury alternatives that don’t come with the sugar curse. Round cheese or cheese prepared with a melon baller can be made to look like Halloween eyeballs, hot dogs wrapped in pastry to look like mummies and ghostly boiled eggs all make fun alternatives to classic sweets.
Go Trick Or Treating on a full stomach
Another very simple way to stop kids stuffing themselves with sugar at Halloween is to go Trick Or Treating straight after dinner. Children are much less likely to overindulge if they already feel full, plus eating the meal stimulates essential saliva that will help lessen the effects of the sweets they do eat.
Whether you manage to have a tooth-friendly Halloween this year or not, remember that brushing teeth is especially important for children. Make sure they brush at night after sweet treats so that this year Halloween doesn’t turn out to be a dental nightmare.