October is National Orthodontic Health Month, and also the time of the year when people of all ages purchase and consume a significant amount of candy. Candy isn't just eaten in vast quantities on Halloween, it's chewed, chomped, munched and ingested during the days and weeks leading up to the holiday. And don't forget about the treats that go on sale on November 1! The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) knows that October can be a dangerous time for teeth with orthodontic appliances and offers the following suggestions to keep your teeth healthy during this perilous month:
- Participate in a candy buy back program – Many orthodontists and dentists will "buy back" candy from patients and donate its value to a local charity.
- Say no to the usual suspects – You should continue to stay away from the treats that can cause the most damage to your braces like sticky and/or hard candies. In addition, avoid eating chips, nuts and popcorn. To stay safe, stick with soft snacks like peanut butter cups or peppermint patties.
- Use moderation – With bowls of free candy at your disposal, you may be tempted to grab handfuls of treats to take home. It's best to take just a few items. If you are the parent of a child with braces, you may want limit the amount of time that he or she can be in possession of the candy.
If you're interested in learning more about keeping your teeth and orthodontic appliances clean, contact an orthodontist in New York City today.