The holidays are fast-approaching. If your child wears braces, now's the time to start worrying about issues associated with candy, especially with Halloween right around the corner. As soon as your child comes home with their bag of candy, they'll want to dig into the sweet stuff. Unfortunately, all that added sugar can wreak havoc on their teeth, especially while they're wearing braces. Luckily, you don't have to say no to all the candy; you just need to take some precautionary measures. Here are four steps you need to take to protect your child's teeth and braces this holiday season.
Sort Candy Before Eating
If your child will be trick-or-treating this year, be prepared to sort through the candy first. While most Halloween candy is safe for your child to eat, there are some candies that will cause serious damage to their teeth and braces. As soon as your child gets home from trick-or-treating, empty their bag of candy and start sorting. You'll want to remove all hard candies, as well as candies that are overly sticky. Hard candies can chip your child's teeth, while sticky candies can pull their braces apart.
Once you've sorted through the Halloween candy, you'll want to take steps to limit consumption. Too much candy at one sitting can cause problems for your child's teeth and braces. Instead, you want to limit consumption to one or two pieces of candy each day. One way to do that is to divide the candy into individual sandwich baggies. You can give your child one baggie each day until the candy is gone. Not only will you be protecting your child's teeth and braces, you'll also be ensuring that the candy lasts longer.
Increase the Dental Hygiene
If your child will be consuming more candy during the holidays, especially around Halloween, be sure to increase their dental hygiene. Brushing and flossing two to three times a day is sufficient for normal conditions. However, increased candy consumption requires increased dental hygiene. Get your child into the habit of brushing and flossing each time they eat a piece of candy. If they're not near their toothbrush when they eat a piece of candy, be sure to have them drink a glass of water. The water will help wash the sugar away from their teeth and braces.
Schedule a Post-Holiday Check-Up
Finally, sugary candy can cause serious harm to your child's teeth and braces. To make sure you catch those issues early, be sure to schedule a post-holiday check-up with the dentist. That way, your dentist can identify early cavities, as well as repair any holiday damage that their braces might have sustained.