Prevent tooth decay this Halloween


CONTACT: Tommy Johnson, D.M.D., (334) 206-5398

Now that Halloween is right around the corner, many children are anticipating getting plenty of candy treats when they trick or treat. Candy consumption for most children will increase exponentially during this time. Meanwhile, parents likely will be putting forth their best efforts to regulate their children’s candy intake and need to remember to be just as vigilant with their children’s oral health care routine.

The Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) Oral Health Office, through creative collaboration and partnerships, is dedicated to making sure resources are available to help educate parents and children on ways to prevent dental decay. For that reason, here are a few tips from the ADPH Oral Health Office to make sure this year’s Halloween candy haul stays cavity-free.


Allow children to eat Halloween candy with meals or shortly after mealtime. Saliva production increases during meals, which helps cancel out acids produced by bacteria in your mouth and rinse away food particles. Also, keep in mind, snacking out of a candy bowl throughout the day can increase the risk of cavity formation.

Choose Candy Carefully

Avoid sticky candy and hard candy that can stay in your mouth for long periods of time. The length of time sugary foods is in your mouth can increase the chances of tooth decay. Sticky candies attach to your teeth and take longer to be washed away by saliva.

Drink More Water

Multiple sources such as the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the American Dental Association support proven studies that drinking fluoridated water can help prevent tooth decay. In most cases, tap water from a fluoridated water system is preferred to bottled water because it guarantees the consumption of fluoride as an oral health measure.

Brushing and Flossing

Decay-causing bacteria can stay on teeth and get between teeth. Brushing (with fluoridated toothpaste) in the morning and at night before bed AND flossing teeth once a day will help control the formation of decay-causing bacteria and plaque and prevent the onset of tooth decay.

For more information on how to prevent tooth decay this Halloween season and year around, please visit



County health departments throughout Alabama provide a wide range of confidential and professional services. Contact your local county health department for additional information.

Mission: To promote, protect, and improve Alabama’s health

Vision: Healthy People. Healthy Communities. Healthy Alabama.