Delta Dental of Arkansas News
Teal Halloween a Treat for Healthy Smiles and Food Allergy Sufferers
Non-edible treats reduce risk of cavities and exclusion due to food allergies
LITTLE ROCK, ARK—The typical Halloween candy is a horror show for oral health and kids with food allergies. Here is a solution that will please all little trick-or-treaters without cavity-causing sugar and allergens: a teal Halloween.
Delta Dental of Arkansas encourages Arkansans to go teal during this spooky season by substituting non-edible treats for the usual caramels, lollipops and jawbreakers. Participants place a teal pumpkin, bucket or basket by their front door to signal a smile- and fool-allergy-friendly home.
“Teal is the color of food allergy awareness,” said Dave Hawsey, VP of Marketing at Delta Dental. “But any non-food alternative to sugary candy benefits teeth and gums. So we were inspired to expand the original idea to include good oral health.”
Going teal is easy and inexpensive. Teal-colored plastic buckets or pumpkins are available at major retailers or online. Or DIYs may prefer to apply spray or craft paint to the conventional orange jack-o-lanterns. Suggested non-edible treats include:
- Markers or colored pens and Halloween coloring sheets, including a template of toothy ghosts and jack-o-lanterns available for free downloading and use from the Delta Dental website, https://www.deltadentalar.com/halloween-coloring-sheet
- Halloween-themed plastic jewelry and hair accessories
- Miniature toys and figurines
- Active toys like bouncy balls and yo-yos
- Art and craft kits
- Finger puppets.
These and other low-cost items can be found at dollar stores and party supply retailers.
Sugar, one of the main ingredients of popular candy and sweets, increases the risk of tooth decay (cavities). Tooth decay is the most common chronic childhood disease in the United States. It is five times more common than asthma and is the number-one reason students miss school or can’t concentrate in class.
About Delta Dental of Arkansas
Delta Dental of Arkansas is the largest dental benefits provider in the state, helping more than 800,000 Arkansans keep their smiles healthy through commercial and Medicaid coverage. As a not-for-profit company, Delta Dental is committed to improving the oral health of Arkansans through the philanthropic efforts of its Foundation, which donated more than $3 million to support oral health education initiatives in the last three years. For more information, visit www.deltadentalar.com/.
Vice President, Marketing