The BEST Non-Candy Halloween Treats

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Halloween is one of the biggest candy holidays of the year. In fact, people will spend $2.7 billion on candy. Parents no doubt are more concerned about the money they’ll have to shell out after Halloween to fix all the cavities those seemingly endless bags of candy will produce. According to the American Dental Association (ADA), the bacteria that exists in everyone’s mouths, including kids’, will chomp down on all that sugar, producing excess acid. It’s that acid that contributes to cavities.

Some of the worst Halloween offenders include sticky and gummy candy, which are hard to remove and may stay longer on teeth, hard candy, which can break teeth, and sour candy, which is so acidic it can weaken and damage the outer shell of teeth. Instead of handing out sugar this Halloween, consider adding some non-candy items that won’t get tricks played on your house!

  1. Glow sticks. Glow sticks are both fun and super useful. Kids love to break-and-shake them; they look cool and help drivers see your child in the dark. Grab a 100-pack and you’ll have enough to hand out and use for your own family.

  2. Temporary tattoos. These fun, Halloween-bag fillers come in an endless variety of styles and patterns. Choose ones with a Halloween theme and your house will be a block favorite.

  3. Bubbles. Bubbles are the best and there is still plenty of time to use them up outdoors before winter comes. They’re a great option and come in a variety of sizes.

  4. Spooky goodie-bag fillers. This is the time of year when spider rings, ghoul fingers and vampire’s teeth are a big hit. Plus, they’re easy to find and inexpensive. A 144-pack is only about $15.

  5. Play dough. Grab a couple bags of your favorite play dough to give out. They come in their own handy container and some are even Halloween-themed.

  6. Bouncy balls. Bouncy balls are a favorite for a reason – they’re fun! Kids and adults alike can’t resist a good bouncy ball. Plus at $3 for 12, they won’t break the bank.

  7. Slap bracelets. Slap bracelets (yes the same ones from your childhood) are still around and still coveted by kids. At around $14 for 72, they’re a bargain.

  8. Note pads. Every aspiring artist or writer will love a notepad to scribble on. Grab a 6-pack and offer them up to your bigger ghouls and goblins.

  9. Erasers. Believe or not, kids do still write with pencils and an eraser is pretty handy to have, especially when they’re as cute as these.

  10. Variety pack. Most discount stores, like Target and Walmart, sell large variety packs of party favors. These packs include pencils, stickers, stamps, small toys and most of the ideas listed above. They offer a wide variety of options for your trick-or-treaters. Plus they’re pretty comparable to what you’d spend on large bags of candy. A 168-piece bag is about $25.

Just because you’ll do your part in reducing the neighborhood’s sugar intake, doesn’t mean your neighbors will return the favor. When your kids bring home bags of sweets, the ADA suggests preventing cavities by:

  • Eating the candy with meals so the excess salvia production cancels out the excess acids

  • Drinking more water

  • Picking out favorites and donating the rest

  • Chewing gum with the ADA seal

  • Brushing twice a day

  • Flossing between teeth

  • Visiting a dentist like Dr. Vacek. Regular visits with Dr. Vacek can help problems from occurring and catch the ones that do when they’re easy to treat.

Dr. Craig Vacek