We all know that drinking soft drinks isn’t the healthiest choice, but many of us still do it anyway. After all, they’re delicious and refreshing! But what you may not know is that besides increasing the risk of obesity and type II diabetes, soft drinks can also have a serious impact on your oral health. The sugar and acids in these drinks can damage your teeth, leading to decay and other problems. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the dangers of soft drinks and how you can protect your teeth from them.
The Dangers of Soft Drinks
Most soft drinks contain a lot of sugar, and as you probably know, sugar is bad for your teeth. When the bacteria in your mouth come into contact with sugar, they produce acids that eat away at your tooth enamel. Not only that, but sugar is the main food source of bacteria, meaning that more sugar equals more bacteria. This can lead to cavities and other problems, like gum disease.
At this point, you are probably wondering about sugar-free soft drinks. Surely sugar-free soft drinks cannot be a threat since they don’t contain sugars. Unfortunately, even though sugar-free soft drinks don’t contain any sugar, they’re still full of acids that can damage your teeth. In fact, most soft drinks contain varying amounts of tartaric, phosphoric, or citric acids. These acids are detrimental to your oral health since they increase the overall acidity in the mouth and erode the enamel. The high acid content can also cause cavities to develop at a faster rate.
How to Protect Your Teeth
The best way to protect your teeth from soft drinks is to simply avoid drinking them altogether. However, this is far easier said than done, especially for those who love their soft drinks. Therefore, we have compiled some tips on how to protect your teeth while drinking soft drinks. While these tips won’t completely prevent your teeth from becoming damaged, they can help decrease the amount of damage being done so that you can enjoy soft drinks and take care of your teeth.
Here are a few tips:
A recent Gallup Poll found that 48% of Americans drink an average of 2.6 glasses of soft drinks daily. If this sounds like you, then one thing you can try is to decrease the amount of soft drinks you consume. For example, try only drinking one soft drink per day or even limiting yourself to only having soft drinks on special occasions. Instead, try drinking more water or even milk. Drinking water offers a variety of benefits for your overall and oral health, so you can’t go wrong with drinking more water. The more you can limit your consumption of soft drinks, the happier your teeth will be.
If you are going to drink a soft drink, try to do so quickly. On average, acids attack your teeth from the moment you start drinking to about 20-30 minutes after you take the last sip. This means that the longer your teeth are exposed to the sugar and acids, the more damage that will be done. So, it is best to drink quickly instead of slowly sipping for hours on end.
Use a Straw
Another way to decrease the amount of damage done to your teeth by soft drinks is using a straw. This will help keep the sugar and acids away from your teeth since the straw redirects the drink so that it bypasses your teeth entirely.
Rinse with Water
After drinking a soft drink, try to rinse your mouth with water as soon as possible. This will help remove some of the sugar and acids from your teeth so that they are not left to sit there and damage your enamel. Rinsing with water also helps to restore the pH of your saliva to decrease the acidity in your mouth. Brushing your teeth can also be beneficial, however you will need to wait about 20-30 minutes for the acid to subside before brushing.
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
Of course, one of the best ways to protect your teeth is to practice good oral hygiene. This means brushing your teeth twice a day for at least two minutes at a time, flossing once a day, and using mouthwash and toothpaste with fluoride. It is also important to visit your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings. By doing all of these things, you can help keep your teeth healthy and strong.
Visit Your Dentist
Finally, one of the most important things you can do for your teeth is to visit your dentist regularly. This is important whether you drink soft drinks regularly or not, but it is even more important if you do consume soft drinks regularly. It is recommended to see your dentist at least once every six months because your dentist can help identify any problems early on and provide you with the necessary treatment. For example, if you have developed cavities, your dentist can fill them before they become a bigger problem.
In this blog, we discussed the effects of soft drinks on your teeth and how to reduce the oral health risks of drinking them. While soft drinks are delicious, they can be very harmful to your oral health because they contain large amounts of sugars and acids that can lead to cavities and other oral health problems. We hope that this blog has helped you become more informed about the risks associated with drinking soft drinks and how you can protect your teeth.