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Dentists offering cash for candy

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MEDFORD (WAOW) -

Children in central Wisconsin are selling their Halloween candy for cash.

Parents and children turned over their sugary sweets to their dentists, so they can go to soldiers serving overseas.

"To be honest I think it's a great program for all of those soldiers out there who don't get a chance to trick or treat for themselves or even with their kids," said Katrina Harris, parent.

Harris and four of her children visited the Gelhaus Dental Clinic in Medford Friday.

They brought in three pounds of candy the family collected on Halloween.

"The less candy we have at home the less they eat and the less I eat," said Harris.

Health experts say the average American child will consume about one pumpkin full of candy in the first week following Halloween.

"When they're consuming that much candy, that's sugar, and that sugar feeds the bacteria that's naturally in our mouth," said Dr. Sally Nazer, dentist. "That bacteria makes acid and then that acid is what creates cavities."

Nazer started the candy buyback program at Gelhaus Dental Clinic when she joined it three years ago.

"What this does is it gets the extra candy off the streets, they don't have to have so much, and then it sends the candy overseas to 'Operation Gratitude' to all of our troops," said Nazer.

The program pays parents and children money for the candy they drop off.

The Gelhaus Clinic offering $1 for each pound of candy.

Nazer adds that her clinic collected 45 pounds last year and she expects more this year.

"Not only does it support good oral health it supports our troops overseas," Nazer said.

The nationwide candy buyback program typically runs for about two weeks after Halloween.

If you want to trade your Halloween candy for cash, call your dentist to find out if he or she is participating in the program.

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