If your child has orthodontics, whether it’s braces or Invisalign, the real horror story of Halloween might begin as soon as the first treat is secured.

It doesn’t matter what age your children are (even if they’re in high school), Halloween is a candy free-for-all day. Sixteen-year-olds might not be going door to door for sweets, but they’re likely getting goodies from their friends, in class, at after-school events or maybe even picking up a favorite treat for themselves.

Everything is fine in moderation — but what if your child has orthodontics? Not all candy is created equally.

For younger children who might still be trick-or-treating, parents have much more control. A common parental tactic is to stockpile treats their children are allowed to eat. This lets kids still go trick-or-treating, but with the understanding they need to swap their swag for suitable candy at home. Orthodontics are limiting, but so are conditions like diabetes or Celiac disease, so this strategy can work with lots of different children.

You know if your child is impulsive. If your kid will stick to the plan, you can rest easy. If not, you might need to be a little more watchful (and bring some suitable candy along with you so your child is not the only one in the group not indulging early).

Safe Candy

Steer clear of caramels and any other type of sticky candy that will be a nightmare to get out of braces. Kids may be embarrassed if goodies such as toffees get stuck in orthodontia. Hard candies, like jawbreakers, aren’t good for anyone’s teeth, but that’s especially true of kids with orthodontics.

Make sure you know your child’s latest favorites and to have a wide selection of allowable ones on hand. Wearing braces doesn’t mean that your child needs to have less Halloween fun than everyone else.

If your children are older and no longer trick-or-treating, remind them about the importance of keeping their braces in good shape. If they have a sweet tooth, focus on what treats they can have — not which ones they can’t.

The Ghost of Halloween

Do you want to see a real disappearing act on Halloween? Forget ghosts and ghouls, and be thankful your child was a good candidate for Invisalign. These clear trays can be removed for up to four hours each day, which is plenty of time to nosh on all that booty they’ll be picking up. Just make sure their teeth are properly brushed and flossed about one hour after indulging. Otherwise, you’ll create a breeding ground for bacteria and extend the haunting season well into November.

Post-Halloween is also a great time to schedule a cleaning with your dentist or a checkup with your orthodontist. Call Johnson Elite Orthodontics to schedule your child’s appointment and take preventive measures before the holiday sweet brigade begins.