This Halloween is guaranteed to be unlike any other, but if you’re a parent, there is one thing that’s still guaranteed: your child will inevitably be overwhelmed with sweet treats. Whether from regular trick-or-treating or a socially distanced gathering, Halloween presents a particularly risky time for children with braces because so many kinds of candy can easily dislodge brackets or become stuck in wires. So, what are the safest types of candy to eat with braces? A local orthodontist is happy to help by sharing the list below.
Chocolate is the ideal braces-friendly treat because it is soft enough to be chewed easily without damaging brackets or wires, and it melts quickly, so it won’t linger on the teeth for hours afterward. The key thing to avoid is chocolate candy with nuts or hard toffee mixed in, as these can present potential problems.
Cookies & Brownies
While these foods aren’t usually considered to be Halloween-specific treats, they are still deliciously sweet, and they are nice and soft and present no danger to braces. If a cookie or brownie seems a little hard, no worries—you can just have your child dip it in milk before taking a bite.
Peanut Butter Cups
Chocolate and peanut butter is a winning combination, as is peanut butter cups and braces! Unlike sticky candies, these don’t get caught in the brackets and wires, which can end up exposing your child’s teeth to sugar for hours after they have eaten the treat. These taste great and then can be easily rinsed out of the mouth with water.
Milk Chocolate & Peanut Butter M&Ms
M&Ms are ubiquitous this time of year, and the two varieties a child with braces should keep an eye out for are Milk Chocolate and Peanut Butter. Unfortunately, peanut M&Ms can be a bit risky, and caramel ones can easily end up being a sticky mess, but the previously mentioned types are yummy and orthodontist-approved!
Your child is guaranteed to encounter candies that could potentially harm their braces this Halloween season, so be sure to tell them to not eat anything until you give them the thumbs up. You can either have braces-friendly items on-hand so you can trade them for more problematic treats, or you can set up a candy exchange with their friends so the process is more fun for everyone. The key thing to remember is that braces shouldn’t prevent your child from enjoying themselves this Halloween, but a little caution will ensure they make it through the holiday without disrupting their path toward a straight smile.
About the Author
Dr. Jeffrey Shirck is an award-winning, board-certified orthodontist and father of three, so he knows better than most about which candies are best for braces and which should be avoided! He and his family enjoy this time of year as much as anyone, and he hopes these tips give you and your child peace of mind for what’s bound to be a unique Halloween. For more tips about how to maintain your child’s braces in the holiday season ahead, you’re always welcome to give Shirck Orthodontics a call for additional information.