How Soda and Juice Affect Toddler’s Teeth
Soda Drinking and Its Damage on Teeth
Soda drinking and its damage on teeth has become a big concern for dentists (especially children’s dentists) nationwide as the consumption of soft drinks by children, and therefore the
possibility for dental health issues has risen dramatically in the last 20 years. Research shows that young teenagers consume the most soda of any age group, with an 1000% increase in soft drink purchases at schools in the last two decades. With soda drinking statistics like these, knowing the effects that soft drinks can have on dental health becomes increasingly important for all parents and children alike.
What Damage Can Soda Do to Teeth?
Many soda drinks, or soft drinks, contain a form of high fructose corn syrup which equates to generally 10 teaspoons of sugar per 375ml can.
This sugar interacts with the mouth’s bacteria to form an acid that attacks the teeth and weakens the enamel (which is the hard, protective outer layer of the teeth). The acid can remain on the surface of the teeth for up to 20 minutes, and the process is repeated with each sip of soda. Over time, tooth decay and cavities can form as a result.
Sugar content is only one of the potential teeth eroding ingredients in sodas. Both regular and
diet sodas contain high concentrations of acids that can also damage teeth, including:
- Carbonic acid:A byproduct of adding carbon dioxide to water to produce the
carbonation in sodas
- Phosphoric acid:Prevents mould and bacteria from growing and gives soda its tangy
- Citric acid:Added to lemon-lime and other fruit-flavoured soft drinks for tartness
All of these acids in sodas can erode your tooth enamel, it will reduce the hardness of the tooth surface,
and cause hypersensitivity. Ultimately, the dentin (which is the layer beneath the enamel) can become
damaged and susceptible to dental cavities and decay.
Children, whose tooth enamel is not fully developed, are especially at risk for cavities and
enamel erosion is due to excessive soda drinking. Colas are also one of the main foods that will stain
teeth in children and teens.
How To Prevent Dental Damage from Soft Drinks
The easiest way to avoid damage caused by soft drinks is simply to not drink soda. The best replacement for soda is water since even juices and sports drinks can be harmful to your teeth,
especially if consumed very frequently. While an occasional soda most likely won’t damage the
teeth, maintaining good oral health and following these tips can help lessen any negative dental
effects of drinking soda