A Dentist’s Guide to Trick-or-Treating

We know what you’re thinking; a dentist is going to give away apples for Halloween, or worse – toothbrushes, so why should you even consider a dentist’s guide to trick-or-treating? While apples are a healthy snack and you should be brushing your teeth regularly, we also know how to have some fun! You can still enjoy treats like your trick-or-treat candy in moderation!

Just remember to brush away the harmful sugars so they don’t stay trapped in your teeth causing more damage.

Halloween is an exciting time of year! From getting all dressed up, to watching scary movies, or putting out treats for the adorable costumed visitors to your home. Are you wondering what candy you should set out this year?

Here’s a breakdown of the best and worst candy for your teeth:

The Worst

What makes candy bad for your teeth is usually the amount of time it spends in your mouth, as that gives it more time to cause damage to your teeth. These types of candy are notoriously bad for your teeth for this reason:

Hard candies

These candies require you to keep them in your mouth for a long time before they dissolve, causing your teeth to be exposed to sugar for a long time.

Sticky or chewy candy

Think caramel candy, gummy bears, or salt water taffy. These candies can easily get stuck between your teeth and cause damage.

Sour Candy

While the thrill of sucking on a candy that is so sour it makes you cringe is great, these candies have high acid levels. Acidity contributes to wearing down of enamel and children with softer enamel are especially at risk.


These candies live up to their name! They are hard enough to chip your teeth, which can result in an unplanned trip to the dentist.

The Best

All the candy that is bad for your teeth shouldn’t discourage you from setting out some delicious treats for your trick-or-treat visitors! There are plenty of candies that are less harmful for your teeth and safe to enjoy in moderation.

Sugar-free lollipops

Sugar-free lollipops help stimulate saliva production, which protects teeth from acids and sugars damaging them.

Sugar-free gum

Like sugar-free lollipops, sugar-free gum helps stimulate saliva production. It also helps dislodge foods that are trapped between the teeth.


While chocolate is far from sugar-free, it melts quickly and therefore does not cause extensive damage to your teeth if consumed alone. However, you should be careful when choosing chocolate bars as they often have fillings like caramel, toffee, or nuts, which could be harmful to teeth.

Peanut butter cups

Similar to chocolate, peanut butter cups disappear from your mouth quickly and therefore do not cause as much damage as a candy that would stay in your mouth for a longer period of time.

While these candies are better alternatives to hard or chewy candies, an excessive amount of sugar can have adverse side effects for your teeth. So remember to enjoy the spoils of your trick or treat excursion in moderation! Happy Halloween!

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