Mall of Georgia Dentistry's Blog

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Sports drinks, energy drinks and your teeth May 22, 2013

Filed under: Dental health — Mall of Georgia Dentistry @ 10:41 am

Have you ever wondered what’s actually in the things you drink?  Unless you’re drinking plain water, the odds are pretty good that citric acid is high on the list of ingredients

The food additive can eat away at your teeth enamel and it’s especially harmful when combined with the sugar in those drinks.

Two of the worst offenders are categories of drinks called sports drinks and energy drinks.  Their acidity is quite high and if not addressed within 30 minutes can start to attack the enamel in your teeth.  How acidic are they?  Well here’s a comparison to both water (which is neutral) and battery acid.  Obviously battery acid isn’t a drink, but it gives you some perspective as to where the acidity of the sports and energy drinks fall.  The chart also shows you the pH of some of the more popular soft drinks:

Soft drinks

As you can easily see they are very acidic.  A single sip of any of the highly acidic sodas, sports or energy drinks will reduce the pH of the mouth below the critical 5.5 level – the level at which enamel starts to demineralize.  And that can happen within a period of 15 minutes.

How do you minimize this?  If you can’t brush within that 15 minute window, try to at least drink some water to dilute it’s effects.  For instance, if a sports drink is used to provide athletes with carbohydrates and electrolytes prior to an event, drink water during the event.

But if you can, try to brush as soon afterward as you can.  You can imagine the effects on a person who consumes these types of beverages daily, for weeks on end.

If you have any questions about these drinks or their effects, give us a call.  We’d be glad to review the information with you and how you can prevent or minimize their effect.

Mall of Georgia Dentistry

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