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How Soft Drinks Affect Your Oral Health

By Dwight D. Peccora, DDS on January 01, 2018

A woman at the dentist's officeA nice cold soda can hit the spot on a hot day or after a long day of work. Whether it's a Coke or something you make yourself with a SodaStream, a soft drink can be refreshing and thirst quenching. Soda isn't without its dangers, however. A number of dental health problems are linked to the consumption of soda.

The team at our Missouri City, TX dental care center would like to consider the impact of soda on your dental health. We'll offer some insight into the damage done and offer some preventive dentistry tips that can help keep your smile looking healthy and beautiful.

Tooth Discoloration from Soft Drinks

If you're drinking any kind of colored soft drink, there's a risk of staining your teeth, particularly your front teeth. Any time a colored substance makes contact with your teeth, your risk affecting the color of your tooth enamel. Over time, major stains can appear on your front teeth simply from the act of sipping on the occasional soda.

Preventing Soft Drink Tooth Discoloration

The best way to avoid tooth discoloration from soft drinks is to use a drinking straw. A straw will allow the soda to bypass the front teeth, reducing the risk of staining over time. It's a simple solution to what may be a long-term problem.

Tooth Decay from Soft Drinks

Many of your favorite sodas contain sugar, and it's a simple fact that sugar can contribute to tooth decay. As oral bacteria feeds on sugars caught on the teeth, this can eat away at healthy tooth structure. Even if you use a drinking straw, the risk of tooth decay increases if you regularly consume soda.

Preventing Tooth Decay Caused by Soda

One good way to prevent tooth decay is to brush your teeth 30 minutes after having a soft drink. This helps remove harmful sugars from the mouth that contribute to tooth decay. Waiting 30 minutes also helps ensure your tooth enamel is not weakened. That leads us to our next point.

Enamel Erosion from Soft Drinks

The carbonation in soft drinks means that your soda is slightly acidic in nature. Drinking soda can increase the acidity in your mouth. When your oral pH is more acidic, it can soften and weaken your tooth enamel, making enamel damage more likely. This condition is known as enamel erosion or dental erosion.

Preventing Enamel Erosion Caused by Soda

To reduce the risk of enamel erosion, it's a good idea to rinse your mouth out with water after having soda. A little swish of clean, plain water can remove sugar and other harmful substances in your mouth, and help balance out the pH in your mouth.

Prevention Tip: Reduce Your Soda Consumption

Perhaps the biggest takeaway in all of this is that soda is not really good for you. The best thing you can do for your dental health is reduce your consumption of soft drinks. Stay hydrated with water instead, and treat soft drinks as an occasional treat.

Simply cutting back on your soda consumption can improve your dental health and also have significant benefits to your general wellness.

Contact Fort Bend Dental

To learn more about improving the health and beauty of your smile, be sure to contact an experienced cosmetic and restorative dentist. The team at Fort Bend Dental is here to help you with your dental care needs.

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