Halloween Candy Culprits
The biggest Halloween candy culprits are the types that are sticky and chewy. Think Gummy Bears, Sour Patch Kids, Swedish Fish and Chocolates. The reason these are so harmful is that they are full of sugar and they stick to the grooves and pits of your teeth. They cause damage to your tooth structure well after you have finished snacking on them. Studies show that the specific bacteria known to cause dental decay uses these sugars as fuel, and their waste products are acids which create a highly acidic oral environment. When your mouth is acidic it causes the minerals in your tooth structure to leach out, thereby softening the enamel until a hole forms (cavity) .
Some tips and tricks I use when I have a sweet tooth urge and I cannot brush my teeth immediately after is to first take a gulp of water and swish it around and swallow. The water will help begin to neutralize the pH of my mouth and also rinse away some residues and acids. The second step is to chew a piece of sugar-free gum which will loosen up food remnants stuck in those pits and grooves. Chewing gum stimulates salivary flow which is a natural PH buffer for your mouth, neutralizing the acids. The best gum is xylitol gum (see my blog on xylitol- https://www.michaelkrochak.com/home/2019/3/22/xylitol-the-magic-sugar-substitute) . It is not as ideal as brushing , but it’s a step in the right direction. Moderation is of course the best strategy but we all need treats every once in a while. Enjoy your holiday, don’t keep too many leftover candies around and you’ll get back onto your normal routine soon!
For more information, you can contact Dr. Michael Krochak at
NYC Smile Spa
30 E. 60th St., Rm 1201
New York, NY 10022
Relax and smile!