A study conducted in 2013 stated that 63% of Americans are actively avoiding the consumption of soda on a regular basis. That’s a major increase from 2002, where only 41% of Americans were avoiding soda. Still, that leaves a lot of people consuming high-sugar soft drinks, which are closely associated with obesity, type 2 diabetes, and tooth decay. Soft drinks can have some negative effects on your teeth and here’s what you can do to prevent damage to your healthy smile.
There are two main effects of drinking soda: erosion and cavities. If you drink soda or other sugary drinks all day, your teeth are always under attack by the acids created by the sugars and the bacteria in your mouth. Erosion begins when the acids in soft drinks encounter the tooth enamel (the outermost protective layer on your teeth) and they begin to reduce the surface hardness of the enamel. Unlike sports drinks and fruit juices, sodas also affect the next layer, dentin, and even composite fillings. The damage done can invite cavities, which develop over time in people who drink soft drinks regularly. When combined with poor oral care, the results can be dreadful.
If you’re attempting to find a solution to prevent cavities, then stop drinking soda altogether. If you’re unable to quit soft drinks cold-turkey, then you do have other options. Drink in moderation. Don’t have more than one soft drink each day. Drink soda faster. The faster you drink, the less time the sugars and acids have to damage your teeth. If you use a straw, this will keep the acids and sugars away from your teeth. Rinse your mouth with water after drinking a soda but don’t brush your teeth. The friction against your sugar-coated teeth can do more harm than good. Instead, wait 30 to 60 minutes to brush. Don’t drink sodas at bedtime because this will keep the sugar and acids attacking your teeth all night. And finally, visit the dentist regularly.
If you feel your teeth have suffered due to sugary drinks, schedule an appointment HERE or call Dr. Bruce Silva today at (512) 605-0860 for more information on tooth decay.