Many people drink fizzy pop or soda regularly, sometimes every day. The choice of these beverages is mind-boggling, so it is little wonder that they are a popular way to rehydrate and refresh, but they can damage oral health in Oshawa.
An average can of soda can contain as many as ten teaspoons of sugar in a form that is easy for bacteria in your mouth to digest. It provides these cavity-causing bacteria with the perfect fuel to thrive, and they create acid as a by-product. The acid weakens tooth enamel, softening it and removing essential minerals like calcium and phosphorus. This results in tooth enamel erosion. Repeated exposure to sugars and acids eventually causes cavities. The effect worsens when the sugars are in a beverage that can flow easily and gets deep between teeth.
Low pH levels negatively impact oral health. Fizzy pop contains a lot of sugar and has a low pH, meaning it is naturally more acidic. Typically a soda has a pH level of between 2.5 and 3.5. A pH level lower than 5.5 can cause tooth enamel to begin to soften or demineralize.
When drinking something sweet, making a beverage last longer by sipping it slowly instead of gulping it down is tempting. The longer you spend consuming a can of fizzy pop, the longer your teeth are exposed to sugar and acids, increasing the risk of tooth enamel erosion and cavities in Whitby. When you have something sweet or acidic, it takes quite some time for pH levels in the mouth to return to normal.
What to Do Instead
Ideally, it’s best to give up drinking fizzy pop entirely. Even diet drinks can be very high in acids, even if they don’t contain sugars and are still bad for your teeth. Instead, try to switch to drinking plain water as it is the best liquid for rehydration.
What to Do If You Want to Drink Pop
If drinking pop is a habit you don’t want to quit, you can still take precautions to reduce the damage to your teeth.
Instead of sipping slowly on soda, drink it quickly and ideally rinse your mouth with plain water afterwards. This will help normalize pH levels in your mouth more quickly and reduce damage to your teeth.
Drink As Part of a Main Meal
When you have a meal, you automatically produce more saliva, a slightly alkaline fluid that helps protect your dental health, counteracting the effects of acid. When your mouth produces more saliva, it helps wash away harmful sugars and acids more quickly and restores a neutral pH faster.
Chew Sugar-Free Gum
Just like having a main meal, chewing gum helps stimulate saliva production, so it’s a good idea to chew gum after enjoying a soda. Ideally, look for a brand that contains xylitol, a natural sweetener that helps fight cavity-causing bacteria.
Practice Good Oral Care
Ensure you brush your teeth regularly and floss daily to help maintain strong, healthy teeth and gums. After having any sugary or acidic beverage wait at least half an hour before brushing your teeth. Waiting allows your mouth to become less acidic, and as it does so, remineralization occurs. This is a process where some of the minerals removed from your tooth enamel are re-deposited back into it, helping to reharden the enamel.
Finally, ensure you have regular dental checkups and hygiene appointments in Ajax. When you visit Margolian Dentistry regularly, we can monitor your dental health and quickly detect the first signs of cavities so we can provide prompt treatment, helping to preserve and protect your dental health.