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CHICAGO-- Give new meaning to the phrase, "Trick or Treat, Give me Something Good to Eat" by handing-out tooth-friendly snacks such as sugar-free gum, fruit, nuts or popcorn this Halloween, urges the Chicago Dental Society and its 3,800 member-dentists.
"Unfortunately, not many people give kids these kinds of snacks even though they are better from a dental perspective," says Alice Boghosian, DDS, a general dentist who practices in Niles, IL, and who serves as a CDS Spokesperson. "For example, popcorn is a good alternative to sweet or sticky snacks because it is high in fiber, contains protein and iron, has no sugar and is low in calories. But popcorn balls are bad because of the sugars used to bind them together."
If the trick-or-treaters must have candy, the best kind of treats are the ones easily chewed and swallowed. "Sticky snacks stay in your mouth longer than foods you can quickly chew and swallow, giving teeth a longer sugar bath," says Dr. Alice Boghosian. Dentists are not opposed to eating candy, if it is done in moderation and in a way that minimizes the damage from decay-causing plaque attacks.
Also, make sure that candy is eaten only after dinner, followed immediately by brushing and flossing. "When you eat a meal, your teeth get hit by a plaque attack, acids from the sugars in candy cause bacteria to form that eat away at teeth and the supporting structures. By eating candy immediately after a meal, kids experience only one plaque attack. When kids snack, they experience a separate plaque attack. Continuous plaque attacks do a lot of damage."
In addition, the Chicago Dental Society recommends that everyone brush and floss daily, maintain regular dental appointments, and purchase a new toothbrush every three months.
A tradition of working for the dental profession. The Chicago Dental Society was organized in 1864 and incorporated in 1878. The objective of the Chicago Dental Society is to encourage the improvement of the health of the public, to promote the art and science of dentistry and to represent the intrest of the members of the profession and the public that it serves.
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