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18Nov2010

Take It Easy On High-Sugar Beverages

 

PEOPLE CALL IT BY ALL KINDS OF NAMES—soda, pop, soda pop, soft drinks, gut rot, bubbly… But it’s all the same thing when it comes to its effect on one’s teeth.

Sugary sodas not only serve up a portion of the nation’s obesity problems, but the acidic sugar byproducts and acids soften your tooth enamel, which contributes to more cavities. Dr. Pitts adds, “When your tooth enamel gets softer, it makes brushing even harder on your teeth creating an unwanted one/two punch.”

What about sugar-free drinks like Diet Coke (which only account for around 14% of all soda consumption)? Well, they’re less harmful, but can still cause acidic damage.

The amount of soft drinks we consume in the US continues to increase dramatically—especially among teens and children. The problem is becoming so bad that the American Academy of Pediatrics is now sounding an alarm about the dangers, and suggesting better guidelines for helping children create good beverage habits. Studies show that at least 1 in 5 kids consumes a minimum of 4 servings of pop a day! Some teens drink much, much more. And college students are known to study and/or socialize for hours on end bathing their teeth in soft drinks.

So, What Can You Do?

  • Reduce the amount you drink. Seems like a big “duh”, right?
  • Find substitutes you enjoy that are more healthy.
  • When you DO drink soda pop, rinse your mouth with water when you finish.
  • Use fluoride toothpastes and/or mouth rinses.
  • Don’t forget to schedule regular dental checkups.
  • Drink more water. It will help take away your cravings for soda.

Here at Greg Pitts DDS, we want to do everything we can to help you keep your beautiful smile for life. If you have questions about different beverages and their effect on your teeth, be sure to ask us. We love talking to you, our valued patients, about your oral health.

And don’t forget to join us on Facebook and Twitter for more discussions about your dental comfort, heatlh, and appearance. We look forward to your next visit!

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