Tag Archives: Halloween

Brush away the candy on National Brush Day, Nov. 1

National Brush Day is November 1, and it is the perfect time to remember and reinforce good brushing habits. The day comes after the biggest candy day of the year…Halloween! No need to fear because two minutes of tooth time, two times a day, can go a long way in preventing tooth decay and keeping mouths healthy.

“Results from the most recent Oral Health Needs Assessment show that there continues to be a need to focus on prevention that includes brushing teeth two times a day, cleaning between the teeth daily, drinking fluoridated water, limiting sugary foods and drinks and getting dental sealants,” said Dr. Ray Lala, the Division of Oral Health Director.

Who doesn’t like to indulge a little on Halloween candy? If you or your young ones trick or treated this year, there are a few helpful tips from the American Dental Association (ADA) that will help you have a mouth safe Halloween.

Helpful Halloween tips to protect your teeth:

  • Try to eat Halloween candy (and other sugary foods) with meals or shortly after mealtime. You produce more saliva during mealtime, and this helps rinse away food particles and works against the acid produced by bacteria in your mouth.
  • Limit snacking. Frequent snacking can increase your risk of cavities, especially if those snacks are sweet.
  • Be choosy about the candy you eat. Try to avoid sticky candy, hard candy, and other sweets that stick to your teeth and stay in your mouth for a long time. The longer a candy stays in the mouth the greater the risk of tooth decay. Chocolate washes off the teeth more easily, so it is a better candy choice but should still be limited.
  • Consider donating your extra candy. There are organizations that help you donate to the military and some dentists have candy take-back programs.
  • Make water your drink of choice and limit sugary beverages as much as possible. Drinking water with fluoride can help prevent tooth decay.

Observe National Brush Day by spreading the brushing message, buying a new toothbrush, and posting a pic of yourself brushing your teeth. Use #NationalBrushDay when posting on social media.

For questions or comments about oral health in South Carolina, email oralhealth@dhec.sc.gov.

Be Careful To Ensure A Fun Halloween

While Halloween – dressing up, going to parties and, of course, eating yummy treats — is an exciting time for kids and adults, it can also come with danger. This Halloween, don’t forget to choose safety first.

According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention blog post, on average, children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than on any other day of the year. “Children are at greater risk of injury than adults because they are small, have trouble judging distances and speeds, and have little to no experience with traffic rules,” the CDC notes.

For Those Going Out for Trick-or-Treat

In its “Halloween Rules of the Road” blog post, the CDC provides the following safety tips to help keep trick-or-treaters safe:

  • Carry glow sticks or a flashlight with extra batteries so your trick-or-treater can see —and be seen — in the dark.
  • Put reflective tape on clothes, costumes, and trick-or-treat bags so motorists can see your child.
  • Cross the street at a crosswalk or intersection. Never cross from between parked cars.
  • Stay on the sidewalk if one is available. Otherwise walk on the shoulder facing traffic.
  • Pay attention and watch where you are going. Distracted walking can be as hazardous as distracted driving.
  • Review basic traffic laws with your trick-or-treater before leaving the house.

For Motorists on Halloween

It’s critical for drivers to exercise caution. The CDC recommends these tips:

  • Remove distractions. Put your phone in the glovebox or the back seat.
  • Be cautious and stay alert to reduce your risk of getting into a crash. Enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully.
  • Pay attention to the speed limit and drive slower when you are around pedestrians.
  • Be prepared to stop at a moment’s notice. Trick-or-treaters might ignore crosswalks and traffic signals.
  • Do not drive under the influence.
  • Make sure children are properly buckled no matter how short the trip.

A Few More Tips

  • Hand out some healthier items for trick-or-treaters such as low-calorie treats and drinks.
  • For party guests, offer a variety of fruits and vegetables.
  • Examine all treats your child collects for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats your child (and you) eat.

Have a safe and healthy Halloween.