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October 16, 2018
What Your Dentist Wants You To Know About Halloween Sweets
The team at Harris Dental Arts knows that Halloween and the holiday season provides many temptations for super sweets and delicious treats. They wanted to share what to do during the season to ensure healthy teeth!
It’s a spooky time of year—jeering jack-o’-lanterns, haunted hay rides, and peals of laughter as costumed kids circle the neighborhoods with their loot of sweet, sticky treats. For most dentists, Halloween is just plain scary—but Dr. Dan Kim of Harris Dental Arts takes a different view.
“It may not be a popular opinion for a dentist, but I love Halloween! Even I can’t resist a bite or two of candy,” says Dr. Kim. “From an oral care standpoint, it’s actually okay to indulge as long as you and your family take a few important steps to protect your teeth and your overall health.”
8 Tips To Keep Cavities At Bay
“Halloween does not have to be a nightmare for your teeth,” laughs Dr. Kim. “By following these tips and tricks, you and the candy monsters in your life can enjoy a happy and healthy Halloween.”
1 – Balance The Week
There are so many tempting treats in your house the week after trick-or-treat (second only to the fast-approaching winter holidays). You know you’re going to be sneaking a chocolate bar or two from the kids’ stash. So, that week, eat a healthy diet that equally balances proteins, fats and carbohydrates (not just sugar, but starches like flour and potatoes) and leaves ‘room’ for the treat you’re likely to unwrap.
2 – Add Arginine
Incorporate leafy greens, nuts, cheeses, seafood, shellfish, poultry and meat to your meals. These foods are high in an amino acid called Arginine, which can increase the pH of your mouth and decrease the likelihood of cavities.
3 – Say Cheese
Not only do dairy products like cheese make for great snacks, but research has shown that casein, a protein found in dairy, helps protect teeth from cavity-causing bacteria.
4 – Rethink The Late Night Snack
It’s much better to eat proteins, instead of carbs and sugars, for a late-night snack. Cheeses and nuts can raise the pH of your saliva and protect your teeth overnight. A candy bar (yes, even fun-sized) should be enjoyed earlier in the day.
5 – Tap Into Your Water
If your tap water is fluorinated, it’s very important to drink it! Bottled water lacks tooth-strengthening fluoride and is most often slightly acidic.
6 – Thank Your Saliva
Did you know your saliva is a major player in defending your mouth from cavities? It’s there to do much more than moisten your food. Saliva has a naturally higher pH level and works to counteract the acids in the mouth from bacteria and fermentable carbs that lead to cavities. Keeping your mouth moist is one of the most important things you can do, even if you need to utilize dry mouth medicines or mouthwashes.
7 – Add Xylitol
Unlike other sweeteners, Xylitol is the only sugar substitute found to actively stop cavities! Give your kids a daily dose of xylitol with chewing gum or lollipops. However, children under age 2 should avoid xylitol, as it can cause an upset tummy. For unreliable night-time toothbrushers. Dr. Kim recommends keeping xylitol water on your bedside table.
8 – The Tried And True Method Is…
Traditional dental care. Traditional, regular dental care at home is still essential to the cavity battle! Care for your teeth by flossing, brushing twice daily and using a fluoride-containing mouthwash.
Don’t Be Spooked! The Harris Dental Team Is Here to Help
“Harris Dental Arts is unlike any dental setting you’ve experienced,” says Dr. Kim. “Patient comfort is our top priority, and you can feel that throughout every detail of our practice.”
At Harris Dental Arts, treatment rooms are more like personal dental spas. In a private room (with the patient’s favorite Spotify channel on the radio!) Dr. Kim takes his time, provides individualized attention to each patient, explains each step of a procedure, and gets to know their dental health goals. Dr. Kim designs each smile with remarkable artistry and precision, offering cosmetic services and solutions for complex cases. And because those solutions are built to last, only the latest technologies and finest, safest materials are used in your mouth.
Dr. Kim is proud to provide a caring environment and high-quality dental artistry, because he believes in the power of a healthy smile. “A smile is a gateway to your personality, to your thoughts and your reactions—so caring for it is as essential as caring for your eyes or your hands. It’s another way you experience the world, and my patients prove to me time and again that the more you smile, the more of the world you’ll get to experience,” he says.
The team at Harris Dental Arts loves being part of Kennett Square.
“Kennett is historic, diverse, and vibrant,” says Dr. Kim. “We’ve been practicing dentistry for over thirty years at Harris Dental Arts, so we’ve built long-lasting relationships with families that have been in Kennett for generations. But at the same time, the community and neighborhoods are always experiencing growth that enriches our perspective and our town. It keeps us fresh, keeps the town improving and innovating, and when you visit Downtown Kennett, you feel that right away.”
Who’s ready for a healthy, and delicious, Halloween?
Find out more about Harris Dental Arts on the website and make sure to follow their tips above for a successful, healthy holiday season!