TORONTO, ON — It’s that time of year again when millions of children – and adults – eat maybe a bit too much candy in a very short period of time. Not to scare you, but your dentists knows what you’re up to! That’s why the Ontario Dental Association (ODA) wants you to better understand what these treats do to your teeth and some tricks to help prevent anything really terrible from happening to them.
Chocolate – Plain chocolate definitely has sugar in it but because it dissolves quickly, it doesn’t haunt your mouth for a long time which makes it less damaging to teeth.
Nuts – All kinds of nuts have a lot of nutrients including vitamins and minerals that can keep your teeth strong and prevent cavities.
Cheese – Eating cheese leaves a protective film on your teeth that can block sugar from doing damage. It also increases saliva which washes away the sugar and acid in whatever you eat and drink.
Good timing – A big bowl of candy can be mesmerizing but it’s less magical when you’ve already eaten a balanced meal because you’re too full to overdo it.
Water – Having a swish of flat water after treat time rinses your mouth and washes away the sugar.
Sugar-free gum – next best alternative to water plus, fresh breath!
Caramels, licorice and dried fruit – Because they’re so sticky and chewy, these sweets can cling to teeth, ruin dental work and cause tooth decay.
Hard candy, jaw breakers and lollipops – They’re bright and colourful but they can chip teeth and dislodge braces. They also soak your teeth in sugar while they dissolve.
Chips – Even though they’re not very sugary, chips easily get stuck on and in between your teeth and can cause cavities.
Brushing right after you eat – Since eating softens tooth enamel, it’s best to wait 30 minutes before brushing and flossing.
The ODA has been Ontario’s primary source for dental information since 1867 and represents over 10,000, or 90 per cent, of dentists in the province. For more dental care tips and COVID-19 updates, including what to expect at your next dental appointment, go to www.oda.ca.