Treat Giving Expected To Be Up This Halloween

Posted on October 12, 2015 in Children’s Oral Health

New Delta Dental Analysis Breaks Down Halloween Treat Giving Trends

If the current trends continue, some good news may be on the horizon for Illinois children this Halloween. Households giving out treats will be up this year, while parents eating their kids' Halloween candy will decrease according to a new analysis by Delta Dental of Illinois.

Treat giving increase:
According to the analysis, treat giving on Halloween will be up 6 percent this year. In 2013, 77 percent of Illinois parents gave out treats, but based on a new 2015 Delta Dental of Illinois survey, 83 percent of parents say they'll hand out treats this year.  Treats include candy, snack foods and other items, such as small toys.

Less parental looting:
In 2013, 81 percent of Illinois parents admitted to eating some of their kids' Halloween candy, but this year, only 60 percent of parents say they'll pilfer through their kid's Halloween stash.

Bad news for chocolate lovers:
While chocolate continues to top the charts this year as the most handed out Halloween candy, fewer parents in Illinois say they'll be giving it to trick-or-treaters. In 2013, 82 percent of parents gave out chocolate on Halloween, but this year, that number has dropped to 57 percent.

Fewer household rules on candy consumption:
The number of parents in Illinois limiting the amount of Halloween candy their child can eat at a time has decreased by 24 percent, from 86 percent in 2013 to 62 percent this year, according to the analysis.

In combination with the analysis, Delta Dental of Illinois is also providing some oral health tips to help combat excess sugar consumption and help children avoid cavities:

  • Choose chocolate candy over caramel.  When it comes to Halloween candy, chocolate is one of the best options to give to trick-or-treaters as it melts fast and washes off of teeth easily, making it harder for bacteria to cling to enamel and create cavities.  Avoid handing out chewy candies like caramel and taffy, which take time to eat and stick to teeth longer, giving bacteria a chance to hang around.
  • Eat dinner before trick-or-treating. If your children are full, they may be less likely to overindulge in candy when they get home.
  • Enjoy Halloween candy after a meal. The increase in saliva production after consuming a meal can help wash away sugar and food particles from teeth.
  • Drink extra water. Drinking water (preferably fluoridated) can help children stay hydrated during trick-or-treating and can help wash away sugar that may otherwise cause tooth decay.
  • Brush for two minutes and floss after digging into trick-or-treat bags. Remind children to practice good oral hygiene to help keep their mouths clean and their teeth free of decay.

For fun and interactive Halloween activities for kids, visit

Want more tips on how to keep your child's smile healthy? Watch our video for tips from dentists to best care for your child's oral health.