Encourage your candy loving kids to have the sweet sticky things at one go instead of having them every now and then. Mark Helpin, a pediatric dentist at the Temple University suggests that it is safer to eat a huge amount of candy one time to avoid cavity risks in future.

Helpin says that the frequency of eating candies and similar refined carbohydrates are major risk factors for caries. Carbohydrates change the pH balance of the mouth, making it more acidic and risk of cavities increases. It takes almost an hour to balance the pH of mouth every time you eat a candy. It takes the same amount of time to neutralize whether you eat one candy or lots of it. Teeth in contact with acidic environment for a longer time are prone to decay.

Helpin suggests parents to let kids eat a bunch of candy now and a bunch later. He warns not to give them one piece now, and then an hour later let them have another piece.

The best time to have candies is the meal time because of saliva increase in the mouth, which helps to wash away acidity in the mouth. He also recommends that parents to encourage children to brush their teeth after eating candy, or at least rinse their mouth with water every time they eat something.

Candies are not the only culprit for cavities. If you think you can replace candy cravings by substituting with chips or pretzels, think again. Chips and pretzels are also carbohydrates and they also will create an acid environment that can create cavities. Also as these munchies get stuck in the teeth, it creates the same risks. Parents can also buy sugar-free candies, and avoid the sticky, gummy gooey ones.

Thumb rule: Avoid anything that sticks to the teeth as it promotes cavities because they allow bacteria to thrive for a longer time.