DECATUR, AL (WAFF) - This is the time that parents of all good little boys and ghouls are getting ready for trick or treat - and that includes dentist offices.
8-year-old Martin is here for a checkup. According to his mom, Claudia Vasquez, he is very excited about trick or treating.
"He wants to eat them all at one time. So usually we go through the candies together and he is allowed to eat a little bit at a time," Vasquez said.
She said her family is careful about what is brought back to the home.
"Yes, we supervise his candy," she said.
But parents need to be watching out for more than how much our kids are eating - we have to watch the kind of candy our kids bring home. The results of several studies show candies with a low ph can actually be "enamel eroders."
Pediatric Dentist, Dr. Michael Brown said a lot of teaching hospitals are doing studies on enamel eroders, including UAB.
"They're finding that the very sourest candy, jolly ranchers sours, the now and laters and that kind of candies that are very citrusy or very sour actually skip that middle step," said Dr. Brown.
The middle step Dr. Brown is talking about is "attaching to plaque," and skipping that step makes cavities come to fruition faster.
"They act on perfectly clean teeth, and it's actually a cavity that's caused by a process called erosion," he said.
All the tools of the trade won't help right away. Instead, dentists recommend eating the candy at meal time, so the ph level will be offset by other foods.
But having certain drinks can cut your cavity chances too, according to Brown.
"Milk is actually a very good thing, and the reason milk is better than water is the milk is more basic and lowers the ph level," he said.
So remember as you're going through your child's trick or treat bag if that candy is both sour and sticky, you need to take some precautions when it comes to your child's teeth.
These are things to know for your health - and the health of your child.