The Worst Halloween Candy
What is the worst Halloween candy for your teeth?
Have you ever wondered which candies are better and which candies are worse for your teeth?
From a dental professional perspective, having no candy at all would be the best thing ever – Just because we put a certain variety of Halloween candy under the “Less harmful” category, it doesn’t mean we encourage its consumption.
Some candies are better to your teeth than others. If you want to indulge this Halloween, make choices that are best for your dental health. And whatever you do, make sure to brush, floss, and rinse as soon as you can to minimize the damage to your teeth.
Less harmful candy for your teeth
According to several studies, there is a compound in dark chocolate that helps harden tooth enamel. Other compounds in cocoa beans also have an antibacterial effect and can help fight plaque. Milk chocolate contains little cocoa beans and fewer of those beneficial compounds but significantly more sugar, which is again bad for your teeth and good for bacteria. Stick to dark chocolate if possible.
Yes, sugarless sweets do exist! Usually, these are candies with stevia. Since sugar feeds bacteria and upsets the healthy ratios of acidity and bacteria in the mouth, sugarless candy may be a healthier option for your teeth. On the flip side, some sugar substitutes and sugarless candy can have other chemicals in them that may be detrimental to your health in other ways. Stevia candy has no chemicals and is the safest to consume.
Candy with Nuts
A lot of nuts in candies or candy bars can help reduce stickiness and it’s the stickiness of candy that increases your chances of getting cavities. So having nuts, along with protein and fiber they contain, can reduce the damage of the sticky and sweet ingredients of the candy. Nuts can also help break up some of the bacterial biofilms of the teeth. Ideally, you can choose candy and candy bars with nuts that are also extremely low in sugar and contain dark chocolate.
The worst candy for your teeth
The stickier the candy, the worse it is for your teeth. Be picky if it’s sticky! The negative effect of these sticky candies will linger because they stick to your teeth increasing your chances of getting cavities. The same unfortunately goes for dried fruit, which is just as bad for your teeth because of the stickiness and high concentration of sugar.
When judging how damaging a candy is for your teeth, the duration of exposure is more harmful than frequency or quantity. If you eat your candy quickly and then brush and floss your teeth, the harmful effect is gone quickly. Sucking on candy for an extended period of time, which is the case with lollipops is not good for your teeth. Frequency of exposure to sugar increases the chance of harm to teeth, so brush and floss right after.
Sour candies, including gummy worms, are some of the worse because they’re the most acidic. Acid is bad for your teeth as it wears down the tooth enamel, which protects your teeth. This makes it easier for teeth to become chipped or broken. Enamel also insulates the tooth. A lack of enamel can expose the nerves in your teeth, which are extremely sensitive to changes in temperature of the things you eat and drink.
Now that you know what candy to buy for yourself, your kids, and the trick-or-treaters that are likely to come by your house tonight, we hope that you enjoy your Halloween.
If you are in pain or worried about your dental health, we are here to answer all of your questions.
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