Happy October! As dentists, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t warn you about the candies to avoid this Halloween. It’s in our DNA to caution you about all the sugar found in candy and how harmful it can be to your oral health, but it’s also Halloween, so enjoy the good candy we mention below and try to avoid the ‘bad’ candy!
Fun fact, the average American consumes a whopping 22 pounds of candy a year, most of it during this month! That is a lot of candy. Following Halloween, we see an influx of patients with a broken tooth, toothaches, cavities and more.
The Worst Type of Candy for Your Teeth
Taffy/Toffee & Caramels – Taffy, toffee and gum such as Laffy Taffy, Airheads, Candy Corn, Saltwater Taffy and more are all STICKY. These sticky candies will of course, stick to your teeth and leave behind a thin sugar layer on the top surface of your teeth which can create bacteria to feast upon.
Caramel candies can actually get stuck between your teeth and sit there for hours until flossed away – but by then your enamel could already be damaged. Caramels are never a good idea with those with braces or fillings so in true Halloween fashion – BEWARE!
Suckers & Jawbreakers – Let’s start off the list with the worst candy so you can look forward to the best candy options a little farther down. Tootsie pops, Dum Dums, Blow Pops, etc. spend a lot of time in your mouth and can create an acidic environment. The more acidic candy (and food) your teeth come in contact with, the more likely you will face tooth decay.
Hard candy like Jawbreakers (which didn’t get its name out of nowhere), Warheads and Jolly Ranchers could break or fracture teeth if not careful when eating them.
Gummies and Licorice – Gummy bears, licorice – these candies are both sticky and acidic (double double toil and trouble – see what we did there?) This makes it difficult to brush them off at the end of the day. If anything, these types of candy should be avoided at all costs!
The Best Type of Candy for Your Teeth
Chocolate – Finally, to the good stuff 😉! Kit-Kats, Hershey Kisses, M&M’s, etc. – though sugary, chocolate melts in your mouth and is pretty easy to wash off. Even better is that dark chocolate has less sugar (but we know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea). Some chocolate candy will have caramels and toffee, so be sure to limit those if so.
Sugar Free Gum – We know, gum isn’t on the top of your list to receive at Halloween, BUT sugar free gun comes in many different flavors and varieties! Sugar free gum can actually help clean substances from your teeth and neutralized floating acids in your mouth.
Granola Bars and Trail Mix – Granola and trail mix may not be what you think when thinking of Halloween candy, but it’s a great option to keep your pearly whites healthy. These options include an assortment of nuts, oats, chocolate and more all in one!
We hope this list of the worst and best candies for Halloween helps when making the right choice! Make sure that you’re brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily all year round.