We all know that the bubbly, sugary beverages are bad for your health. However, what is often not addressed in common health conversions is how bad soda consumption is to the health of your teeth. Not only is the high sugar levels harmful to overall body health, but also affects your dental health and can lead to cavities, tooth decay, and can wear away the actual tooth enamel.
Here are some facts you need to know about soda and your teeth.
How Soda Affects Your Dental Health
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over half of all Americans drink at least one soda a day. The numbers are staggering when you consider, that teens and children are included in those totals. Men and teens (ages 12-19) are more likely to consume these sugary beverages than women. The average teenage boy can consume up to over 275 calories just from sodas daily.
When soda is consumed, the sugars the beverage contains interact with the natural bacteria in your mouth and form an acid. This acid attacks your teeth! In addition to that acid created in your mouth, sodas contain their own acids and also negatively impact your dental health. With each swig of soda, you are beginning the damaging reaction that can last about 20 minutes. Now consider individuals drinking sodas throughout the day and the shocking impact their teeth are experiencing day in and day out.
Two Main Effects on Your Teeth
- Erosion – In addition to the numerous adverse health side effects, drinking sodas regularly and at high volume can also cause tooth erosion. While tooth erosion and damage to the first layer of the teeth is a tremendous issue for all, teens and children are at greater risk since their enamel is not fully developed.
- Cavities – Cavities can also be a side effect of soda consumption. Once the damage has occurred to the exterior enamel of the tooth, more extensive damage occurs such as cavities.
How to Prevent Tooth Damage
Here are a few tips you can use to prevent tooth decay as the result of drinking soda. If you must have a soda to drink, consider drinking no more than a 12 oz can and drinking it all in one sitting, not throughout the day. Secondly, consider using a straw so the beverage doesn’t have direct contact with your teeth. Staying hydrated with plenty of water is also crucial in total health and can assist in preventing tooth damage caused by sodas.
Lastly, maintaining proper dental routines – flossing, brushing at least twice daily with fluoride, and regularly scheduled dental exam appointments are important.
If you have more questions or would like to schedule your next dental exam, contact us!