Trick or treat! As you and your family prepare for Halloween, the staff here at Newpark Orthodontics wants to make sure your holiday is spooky, fun, and braces-friendly! Braces won’t stop you from enjoying Halloween, but it is necessary to take some precautions to make sure that you are making the right choices for your smile this holiday. We’re here to help! Here are a few tips, tricks, and treats to make sure your Halloween doesn’t end with a broken bracket or cavities!
Tricks to Dodge
When it comes to celebrating Halloween with braces, the biggest concern to address is which candies you can and can’t safely eat. While the same rules for everyday food restrictions apply to Halloween candy, the temptation to dig into your trick or treating stash can be difficult for kids to fight. Have a conversation about what candies should be avoided before the celebration begins, and check in throughout the night to hold your child (or yourself!) accountable.
Orthodontic patients will want to avoid biting down and crunching on hard candies. Even if you don’t chew hard candy, letting it sit in your mouth while it dissolves gives the corrosive sugars plenty of time to damage your teeth and your braces! Look out for candy bars that contain nuts, they are not a good idea for braces either.
The same goes for sticky or chewy candies. Treats like caramel, taffy, and gummies can get stuck in your teeth and braces, causing cavities and even broken brackets. A less obvious treat to avoid if you have braces if popcorn. While it may look soft and harmless, popcorn kernels are very hard and have been known to break brackets and get lodged between teeth, which can be very painful and damaging!
Treats to Choose
Chocolate without nuts or caramel is usually soft enough to chew. Some chocolates will even just melt in your mouth! If plain chocolate just isn’t your thing, try chocolate candies with delicious soft centers like marshmallow fluff, creme, or nut butter. Bonus points if you choose dark chocolate, which contains less sugar and additional health benefits like antioxidants!
If your child is concerned about missing out because of their braces, Halloween can be a great opportunity to think outside the box and come up with a unique treat! Cut up your family’s favorite fruits into bite sized pieces, start a new Halloween snack tradition like a spooky cake or pie, or come up with your own creative, braces-friendly treat!
Alternative Halloween Activities
Trick-or-treating is definitely not the only fun activity you can do with your family on Halloween. Offer to help your child host a pumpkin carving party for their friends, with treats and creative pumpkin designs! You can also go to a haunted house attraction nearby, or enter a costume contest. There are so many ways to celebrate Halloween, so don’t be afraid to find your own fun!
No matter how you decide to celebrate Halloween, please promise us you’ll thoroughly brush your teeth and floss after you enjoy your treats! If you’re passing out candy to trick-or-treaters, be sure to include some braces-friendly treats for them to choose from. Happy Halloween!