Soda is everywhere. It's in every vending machine, restaurant and grocery store. You've likely heard that drinking pop isn't good for your teeth, but nearly everyone drinks it. Can it really be that bad?
Spoiler alert: in the battle between your teeth and soda, soda always wins. A can of pop is delicious, but it also can have horrible effects on your dental health. Newmarket Dentist has put together this guide on how sugary drinks affect your teeth and what you can do to avoid serious damage.
How Soda Damages Your Teeth
It's not a secret that soft drinks contain a lot of sugar. Sugar on its own isn't what damages our teeth. However, when we drink a sugar-filled soda, it starts to interact with the bacteria in our mouth. Some of the bacteria in our mouth are good for our oral health, but others are not. The harmful bacteria eat the sugar and excrete acids which affects our teeth enamel.
The shiny, outer layer of our teeth is the enamel. Enamel is your teeth's main line of defense and is needed to protect the nerves and dentin. The reason soda can lead to tooth decay is that the acids in the soda and the acids produced by bacteria hurt the enamel. If this happens too often, the teeth can become weak, brittle and sensitive.Once your teeth are vulnerable, the bacteria in your mouth can then easily form cavities. Cavities that are left untreated ultimately lead to other serious oral health problems.
Is Sugar the Only Culprit?
If sugar were the only issue, switching to an option like diet-coke would solve all our problems. Sadly, it's not that simple. Diet drinks are better than regular soda for our oral health, but diet options still contain other acids that hurt our teeth. Carbonic acid is what created bubbles in your drink, so even unsweetened fizzy drinks can cause problems due to the high acidity level.
Minimizing Damage Caused by Soda
There is a substantial link between soda consumption and tooth decay. However, that doesn't mean you should avoid drinking them entirely. Stopping drinking them all together might be the best way to avoid damage, but it is still safe to consume in moderation. Here are 7 tips for how to help protect your teeth from soda induced tooth decay.
- Drink in moderation. If you're going to drink soda, try to reduce how often you drink it.
- Avoid drinks with the most acid. Pepsi and Coca-Cola are some of the most acidic sodas you can drink. Instead consider opting for a less acidic option like Sprite or Diet Coke.
- Always drink through a straw placed towards the back of your mouth. By drinking through a straw, the liquid has less time to interact with the front of your teeth.
- Avoid taking your time while drinking. By drinking quickly, you give the acid less time to sit on your teeth and cause damage.
- Rinse your mouth with water once you're finished. Water will rinse away some of the leftover acid and sugar. By rinsing them away, there will be less damage caused to your teeth.
- Never brush right after drinking. Your teeth are vulnerable after being exposed to acid. By brushing them after, you can cause more damage. Instead, you should wait a minimum of 30 minutes to brush your teeth.
- Don't skip any dental check-ups. It's your dentist's job to make sure your teeth are healthy. Visit them often so that they can detect any problems with your oral health and correct it before the problem becomes worse.
Contact Your Dentist Today
Soda might be satisfying, but it is important to remember the negative impact it has on your oral mouth. If you are going to drink a sugary drink, it is important to also consider your oral health. Visiting a dental professional at least twice a year will help keep your teeth and gums healthy. If you need a dental clinic, Newmarket Dentist is here to help. By creating a directory of the top dental clinics in Newmarket, we’ve made it easy to find the right healthcare provider for you. Visit our website today to learn more!
* Newmarket Dentist provides general information only. Our aim is to provide the most accurate information possible, but we do not take responsibility for any errors. In order to get the best results it is important to consult with your dentist or health care professional for further information, diagnosis or treatment.