Thursday, 6 October 2022
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Preparing for Halloween

Here are some hints to get you and your loved ones through Halloween season.

Limit snacking to a restricted time limit.

Even eating very healthy snacks will leave plaque acid on the teeth. Tooth enamel that has frequent exposure to plaque acid without time to be buffered by saliva leaves this tooth enamel prone to decay. Limit the intake of treats to a certain time in the morning and afternoon.

Make sure you have healthy treats available.

Treats don’t need to be boring or unhealthy. Cheese with crackers, yoghurt, sushi, fresh fruit, and dips with raw veggies are quick and healthy snacks that are delicious and nutritious. You’ll find that if you don’t have sugary snacks in the house, you’ll crave them less.

Give your teeth 30-60 minutes after eating before brushing.

Microscopically, the enamel’s most superficial layer will be softened by the acids of whatever food or drink you’ve consumed- even if it’s healthy! Allowing the minerals in the saliva to harden this layer of enamel for 30-60 minutes prevents you from brushing away precious tooth enamel.

Keep up your water intake.

Water is what helps your body uses to produce saliva. Saliva is important as it washes away food and neutralizes acids that are produced by bacteria in the mouth. We advise against using sports drinks that are marketed as having a large quantity of “electrolytes” in them. These contain enormous amounts of sugar and are not what you should use to rehydrate yourself.  Frequent sips of water are best on Halloween.

Keep up regular brushing and flossing.

This one speaks for itself! Time away from school and work doesn’t mean time off from home dental care. Keep up regular brushing and flossing because the risk of gum disease and decay don’t go on holiday!

Teeth aren’t tools!

Don’t use your teeth to tear open wrappers and packets of sweets. Repeated strain will eventually result in chips and cracks.

Work smarter, not harder.

Be careful when eating very hard foods, such as toffee, nuts, and lollypops. If you have heavily filled teeth, the harder foods are often best avoided. Be sure to chew hard foods on your back teeth, rather than the front teeth. Anterior teeth aren’t designed to for chewing hard foods.

Treats are nice, but don’t forget about the tricks.

Enjoy “tricks“ or activities with family- such as board games or watching movies together, rather than only thinking of the food  or the “treats” that are around as being the “main event”.

Make sure you have your hygiene maintenance appointment booked for Halloween

These appointments give our hygienists the opportunity to smooth over older fillings or restorations to remove plaque traps and to try to extend the lifespan of older restorations by a few months or years. We know that older restorations will eventually need replacement, but we can often make restorations last a little longer with some simple maintenance carried out during a hygiene session.

Hygienists are often the first clinicians to find cracks and decay that are hidden under deposits of plaque and tartar. Early detection of cracks and decay often means shorter and cheaper restorative appointments with our dentists.