Are you a big soda drinker? If you answered yes then you might want to think about how it’s affecting your teeth.
Soda has a high level of acidity, which means it can break down your tooth enamel and lead to tooth decay. If your enamel breaks down too much, then you may need to eventually get veneers or crowns to counterbalance the effects and avoid future tooth replacements. The acid and sugars in soda also contribute to tooth discoloration.
With soda consumption and 100 percent juice intakes at an all-time high, many people have made a habit of drinking these acidic drinks every day if not multiple times a day. In truth, soft drinks are one of the number one contributors to tooth decay.
Now, before you get too worried, the good news is that you can take action to prevent and reduce tooth decay. Recent studies have come up with the following suggestions:
- Consume two or more servings of dairy each day
- Limit the intake of 100 percent juice to 4-6 ounces
- Consume other sugared beverages occasionally
- Drink soda with a straw
It’s important to note that you can still drink soda occasionally since everything is fine in moderation. The trick is to not use it and other sugary beverages as a substitute for water as that can cause tooth (and health) problems in the long run.
How soda causes tooth decay
The sugar in soda teams up with the bacteria in your mouth to form acid. This acid attacks your teeth and causes decay. Many people make the mistake of choosing diet or “sugar-free” soda instead of regular thinking that it’s not as bad for them, but diet soda actually contains its own acid which is just as damaging to teeth.
When you break it down, each sip of soda you take starts to attack your teeth. Each attack can last up to 20 minutes and the process starts over each time you have a drink. Consistent on-going attacks can tear down your tooth enamel. Kids and teens are most vulnerable to soda because the enamel on their teeth is not finished developing.
What you can do to avoid tooth decay
As stated above, limiting your consumption of sugary beverages is the easiest way to combat tooth decay. Follow that up with routine brushing and flossing (at least twice a day) and by visiting your dentist for regular cleanings.
If you’re concerned about tooth decay, schedule an appointment with the dental experts at Joyner Dental Arts. We specialize in helping the people in Eastern Iowa create beautiful, healthy smiles. We’d love to help you with any dental concerns you may have. Let us schedule an appointment for you today.