Candy and Braces: A Parent’s Guide to Halloween

Halloween is fast approaching, and candy is already lining the shelves of your local grocery store. We all know, however, that candy and braces don’t always get along. For parents of children with braces, this can be a very stressful time. With an endless number of dietary restrictions your child has been told to follow, it can seem like an uphill battle. Fortunately, we at Crane & Seager have put together this helpful guide for you and your child to have a great Halloween! 

Candy & Braces: A Parent’s Guide to Halloween

Braces and Candy: What is Safe?

Even if you or your child plans to stay in and watch scary movies, candy is an essential part of the Halloween celebration. These are the candies that are safe for your child’s braces: 

  • Chocolate– Any type of soft chocolate, whether a chocolate bar or peanut butter cup, is safe for braces. You should still be mindful of large pieces of chocolate. Biting into a larger chunk can still damage braces, so we recommend breaking it into smaller pieces. The bonus: this makes the candy last even longer! If the chocolate is frozen, this could also damage braces or teeth. Proceed with caution. 
  • Cookies– Although it’s not actually candy, there is usually a neighbor who opts for baked goods. Most cookies are soft which is safe for braces. You should still be mindful of hard cookies, especially from the store. A hard cookie can break off a bracket or bend the wire, which is an unnecessary scare this Halloween. 
  • Candy Apples- If cut into smaller pieces, candy apples are generally okay due to the lower amount of stickiness. Whole apples are notoriously bad for braces, so it’s important to cut them into smaller pieces. 

Braces and Candy: What to Avoid

The less fun part of the article, these are the candies to avoid, or at the very least, proceed with caution: 

  • Hard Candy– Hard candy is a grey area, to say the least. If you or your child is able to enjoy a piece of hard candy without biting down, then this would technically be just fine. Most people, however, do not avoid this. We usually say it’s better to be safe than sorry, so if you don’t think your child can resist biting into a Jolly Rancher, it’s best to avoid it altogether. 
  • Sticky Candy- With hard candy being off the table, sticky candy may seem like a safe alternative. Unfortunately, sticky candy gets caught in difficult places to clean and can mess with wires and brackets. This means no gummies, jellybeans, and absolutely no caramels. Although they may be soft, they are still worse for braces than hard candy. 
  • M&M’s and Skittles- We may have said that smaller pieces of chocolate are better, but there are limits. The small size of these candies makes it easier for them to slip under the wires and pop off a bracket or two. If eating handfuls, then that multiplies the risk. 

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