Effects of Soda
Soft drinks are no longer an occasional treat. They’ve become a daily habit for a growing number of people, especially children, teens and young adults. North American women drink more Diet Coke than water! This steady diet of soft drinks is a leading cause of tooth decay.
People don’t often realize that one bottle of soda is NOT always ONE serving. Often, one 16 oz. bottle is two servings which means you are consuming far more sugar than you think!
How Tooth Decay Happens
Sugar in pop combines with bacteria in your mouth to form acid.
Diet or “sugar-free” pop contains its own acid.
Acid in soft drinks, whether they contain sugar or not, is the primary cause of weakening tooth enamel.
The acid attacks your teeth – each acid attack lasts about 20 minutes.
The acid attack starts over again with every sip.
These ongoing acid attacks weaken your tooth enamel.
Bacteria in your mouth cause cavities when tooth enamel is damaged.
If you have a receding gum line, acid does more damage below the gum line than above it. This is particularly a concern for adults.
A woman had no cavities last year. This is a photo of the same person’s teeth one year later with 15 cavities, due to soda consumption combined with improper dental habits. Anyone can have a soda or juice once in a while without harm. It’s what you drink habitually that matters.
How to Reduce Decay
Drink soft drinks in moderation.
Don’t sip for extended periods of time. Ongoing sipping prolongs sugar and acid attacks on your teeth.
Use a straw to keep sugar away from your teeth.
After drinking, swish your mouth out with water to dilute the sugar.
Never drink pop or juice before bedtime because the liquid pools in your mouth and coats the tongue and teeth with sugar and acid.
Read labels. Regular pop is high in sugar and “sugar-free” or diet is high in acid. Sugar and acid are both horrible for your teeth.
Drink water instead of pop. It has no sugar, no acid, and no calories.
Get regular check-ups and cleanings to remove bacteria build-up (plaque). Don’t forget to floss!
Use fluoride toothpaste to protect your teeth.