Making an investment in braces for your children takes a lot of time and money, but the benefits of wearing braces if you have misaligned teeth are worth it. With orthodontic braces, these devices require people to be diligent with their oral care, and for kids, this can be especially hard to deal with. Instead of being able to lackadaisical and enjoy all the candies and sweets we want, people with braces often have to fight harder to keep their teeth and braces clean. Since Halloween is coming soon, it can be especially upsetting for children with a new set of braces to not be able to enjoy their favorite sweets whenever they please.
To help your children handle their braces dilemma, we’re going to provide a short guide on caring for braces, and the best ways to encourage healthy, responsible fun this Halloween.
The Rules of Wearing Braces
Oral hygiene routines are especially important for those wearing braces – braces have a significant risk of bacteria and plaque buildup along with the tooth’s enamel and in between the wires and brackets that help align the teeth over time. It takes a tedious amount of time and effort to brush and floss, but overall, it’s essential for preventing the onset of cavities, gum disease, and tooth loss. Having misalignment and poor oral health can make it easy for bacteria and plaque to develop, and it becomes an ever-repeating cycle that is practically endless. With braces, those problems are significantly reduced, but it’s important to follow your dentist’s instructions on caring for your braces, simply by:
- Removing elastics and other removable parts before brushing
- Cleaning the braces around the wires and pins with a toothbrush to remove plaque and debris
- Brush your teeth, performing circular motions around the gum line
- Flossing once a day to remove plaque and debris from in between the teeth
- Rinse thoroughly with mouthwash
- Schedule regular orthodontic visits for braces checkups
Getting braces matters, especially for children with moderate to severe malocclusion. If your child’s 12 or under, they most likely still have their primary teeth (baby teeth). While their primary teeth will fall out, it’s important to prevent the onset of cavities, as those primary teeth can become infected, causing pain and swelling. Those infections can also affect the growth and development of permanent teeth, leading to misalignment and other orthodontic problems.
However, this also means that by wearing braces, your child will most likely be unable to enjoy the candies, sweets, and other foods they love. Some of the most common food items that people love often come at a cost, as chewy, sticky, and other foods that require excessive chewing bring the risk of losing wires, brackets, and the risk of food getting stuck in the molars of the teeth, making it difficult to clean. Halloween is especially a difficult time, because while many children often are able to indulge in those sticky, chewy sweets, your child may experience some form of jealousy and disappointment.
Tips To Follow For A Happy Dental Halloween
But don’t worry! We’re here to provide some better ways for your child to enjoy Halloween this year through some tips and recommendations. When it comes to Halloween, there are many ways your child can enjoy this holiday and keep their teeth safe, including:
- Soft Chocolate Bars
- Brownies, Cupcakes, and Cookies
- M&M & Hershey’s Kisses
- Peanut Butter Cups
Just make sure to avoid candies that can stick to their braces, such as bubblegum, taffy candies, hard candies, and caramels. If you are wishing to have your child avoid sugary candies altogether, then there are plenty of other options that can help your child have a fun Halloween and keep their teeth healthy, including:
- Giving Healthy Food Options: Oranges, apples, bananas, and other soft fruits can be an excellent way for your children to have healthier snacks that contain vitamins and nutrients. These fruits can also be used for home made treats.
- Switching Snacks For Toys: Instead of providing snacks, you can provide toys such as vampire fangs, playdoh, bouncy balls, and glow sticks to excite them this Halloween.
- Give Halloween-Themed School Supplies: Why not help your child get back to school with Halloween themed pencils, folders, backpacks, and organizers. These items can be used instead of candies to get them excited for Halloween without hurting their teeth.
- Host Party Games & Activities: If they cannot enjoy candy, then giving them games and activities to take part in can get them excited for the holiday, including corn mazes, haunted houses, and amusement parks.
Overall there are many ways your child can enjoy Halloween without hurting their oral health. For more resources about caring for your child with braces, contacting your local orthodontist is the best resource out there to help keep their teeth clean and healthy.