29 October 2020

Are dentists really endorsing food comas this Halloween?

Clinical The Back Page

Dentists say gobbling up all your Halloween sweets at once is better for your teeth than grazing on lollies for weeks.

In one of many Halloweeeen-themed press releases going straight to The Back Page’s junk folder this week, the president of the Australian Dental Association Dr Carmelo Bonanno pointed out that not eating sweets is the best thing for your teeth, but if you absolutely must, bingeing and rinsing is better than saving treats for later.

Eat faster, kiddo!

“Most people won’t know this, but it’s better to consume sweets over a shorter period, than to repeatedly expose your teeth to them over a prolonged period of time,” the Canberra-based dentist said.

“This is because every assault of sugar that goes into your mouth feeds bacteria which create acid that dissolve the tooth enamel, exposing the mouth to decay. Doing this repeatedly throughout the day, over a few days or in the week after Halloween, is cumulative.

“Smart alternatives to sweet treats are a great option for young mouths, like little games, toys or sports gear,” he said.

Eating lollies that are bigger than your head is also not a good idea

So basically, inhale all your sweets at once and put yourself in a treat coma try to avoid dissolving your teeth with sugar this Halloween.

The Australian Dental Association also has a “swag of tooth tips” (someone is really getting creative in the comms team), which include:

  • eating your sweet treats at mealtime so your saliva acts as a buffer;
  • eating dark chocolate instead of candy because it’s lower in sugar;
  • rinsing your mouth with water after eating sweets and;
  • not going for sticky sweets that lodge in your molar teeth for days.

If you see something stupid, say something stupid… Send all your festive press releases to felicity@medicalrepublic.com.au.

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