Halloween Wreaks Havoc on Teeth

1 decade 7 months 3 weeks ago Wednesday, October 31 2007 Oct 31, 2007 Wednesday, October 31, 2007 2:01:04 PM CDT October 31, 2007 in News

However, getting lots of candy can take a toll on our teeth. NBC's Karen McNew talks to an expert in this Your Health report.

How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Tootsie Pop? Too many for Dr. George Koumaras.

"We have these tootsie roll type candies that are the very sticky kind that will stay between the teeth for a very long time unless you have brushed it away," said Dr. dentist Geoge Koumaras. "Candies that are the sticky gummy type candies and those that take a long time to chew or eat are the worst candies you can eat."

Dr. Koumaras says candy that allows sugar to have constant contact with your teeth over time can cause more damage than other types.

"The better candies to eat are those types of candies that you chew they dissolve you swallow it so the contact with the teeth is much more limited than with these gummy type candies," said Koumaras.

Examples include small chocolates, and candies that take less time to eat which means your teeth aren't covered in sugar as long.

And the reason you want to pick the stuff that doesn't hang around as long is because the bacteria in your teeth gets energy from sugar when you pick the chewy kind the gummy kind that give bacteria energy you are more inclined to get cavities. 

"It really boils down to limiting the amount of candy that they eat and making sure that they brush their teeth," said Koumaras.

Some sweet news for kids and adults who want to keep their sweet tooth cavity free.

Doctor Koumaras says it's okay to give 4 or 5 pieces on the night of Halloween.

But then you may want to limit candy to 2 or 3 pieces a day or every other day, and most importantly make sure your kids are brushing their teeth at least twice a day

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