With summer just around the corner, many of us are reaching for our favorite beverages to quench our thirst. You probably know that consuming too many sugary sodas leads to cavities. However, you’re not doing your teeth any favors by choosing energy or sports drinks instead! Your Colorado Springs dentist explains how these popular beverages can permanently damage your smile and what you can do about it.
What Does the Research Show?
Recently, a study was conducted by Dr. Poonam Jain and her research team at Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine to compare the impact of nine energy drinks and 13 sports drinks on teeth. Samples of human molars were doused in each of the 22 beverages for 15 minutes, then soaked in an artificial saliva for two hours afterwards. After this cycle was completed four times a day for five days, the sample teeth were compared. The results showed that the lower the pH of a beverage, the greater the damage. Energy drinks were found to be twice as acidic as sports drinks, and both caused more enamel erosion than soda.
How Else Do Energy & Sports Drinks Impact Oral Health?
Dental experts believe that energy and sports drinks cause much more harm than just enamel erosion. They suggest that these popular beverages can also damage your teeth by:
- Creating an environment that fosters the growth of oral bacteria, which increases the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.
- Causing a “wired” feeling that encourages a condition known as bruxism, or nightly teeth grinding, which can weaken and break teeth.
- Promoting more acid reflux production, which can eventually lead to more cavities.
Protecting Your Smile While Staying Fit & Hydrated
Since staying hydrated and maintaining great oral health are both important to your overall wellbeing, it’s important to pay attention to what you drink. Protect your teeth while quenching your thirst this summer by keeping a few tips in mind:
- Try drinking energy and sports beverages with a straw or diluting them with water.
- Wait at least 30 minutes after drinking an acidic beverage to brush your teeth.
- Visit your dentist twice a year to prevent oral health issues and develop a hydration regimen that protects your oral health.
Don’t let your beverage choices damage your teeth and ruin your summer. Keep your sunny smile strong and drink plenty of water instead of energy or sports drinks!
About the Author
For over 35 years, Dr. Gregory M. Solich has been providing excellent dental care that improves both overall wellbeing and self-confidence. He is proud to offer beautiful, functional, and long-lasting results with state-of-the-art technology and a genuine care for his patients. As such, he has been voted “Top Dentist in Colorado Springs” by Style Magazine and was also the recipient of a “Best Of” award from The Gazette in 2009. For more summer smile care tips, feel free to reach him via his website or at (719) 548-9393.