RICHMOND, Va. -- Halloween may be in the rearview mirror but many families and young trick-or-treaters still have an abundance of candy.
Richmond orthodontist Dr. Natalie La Rochelle urged parents and caregivers to set a good example for their children when it comes to consuming treats.
“As an adult, if you can remove the stash of candy at home that's going to greatly benefit your children because avoiding candy is one of the best ways to avoid cavities,” Dr. La Rochelle explained.
Candy spending was predicted to reach $3.6 billion this year, a 16% jump from previous highs, according to the National Retail Federation.
While candy in moderation isn’t always bad, too much candy and too often can lead to concerns about cavities.
Dentists with the Virginia Dental Association (VDA), like La Rochelle, recommend the following oral health tips when eating Halloween candy this year:
- Brush your teeth or swish your mouth with water after a treat
- Do not consume candy throughout the day, save it for a treat after a meal
- Avoid sticky or sour candies
- Look for dark chocolates that are low in sugar
- Don’t keep a stash of candy on hand. Have your family pick their favorites and donate the rest
“It’s important to keep oral health in mind as kids trick-or-treat,” said Dustin Reynolds, DDS, VDA president. “Enjoying sweets is a fun part of Halloween and the holiday season, but limiting candy consumption is one of the best things people can do to avoid cavities. It’s also helpful to get rid of the stash that’s often leftover so that kids – and parents – aren’t tempted to overconsume.”
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