Choose candy that melts and disappears quickly.
The longer teeth are exposed to sugar, the longer bacteria have time to produce cavity-causing acid.
Have candy in small portions at regular eating times, such as after a meal, as dessert.
Saliva produced at regular meal times “rinses” off the sugar from teeth.
Choose sugar-free candy and gum with xylitol.
Gum and candy with xylitol will actually protect teeth by reducing the acids produced by bacteria and increasing saliva to rinse away excess sugars and acids.
Powdery candy, such as sugar straws, are less damaging.
Powdery candy is loaded with sugar, but it dissolves quickly and doesn’t stick to teeth.
Chocolate, such as candy bars, are less damaging.
Chocolate dissolves quickly in the mouth, which decreases the amount of time sugar stays in contact with teeth.
Hard candy, such as lollipops or mints, can be very damaging.
Hard candy is often sucked on slowly for an extended period of time. Also, biting hard candy can break teeth.
Chewy candy, such as caramels or gummies, are risky.
Chewy, sticky treats, stays on teeth for a long time, giving more opportunity for acid to attack enamel.