If you’ve recently made the switch from regular soda to diet soda or sparkling water, you’ve done something great for your health. Consuming less sugar is hugely beneficial to both your general health and your teeth! But, like so many dietary choices, it’s not quite that simple. Carbonated beverages still increase your risk of oral health problems, but there are some easy steps you can take to enjoy them without needing major dental work from a dentist in Arvada. Keep reading to learn why carbonated beverages are harmful and how you can reduce their negative impact on your smile!
How Do Carbonated Beverages Affect Your Oral Health?
Diet sodas, sugar-free energy drinks and sparkling water are incredibly popular. Some people even prefer the taste of sparkling water so much that they drink it exclusively instead of plain.
Unfortunately, although many people think they’ve reduced their risk of tooth decay by going sugar-free, carbonated drinks are still harmful because they contains phosphoric or carbonic acid.
And while enamel is incredibly hard and tough, it isn’t indestructible. The same way that acid rain erodes marble and stone over time, the acids in carbonated beverages will soften and erode your enamel, potentially leading to cavities.
How Can You Enjoy Carbonated Beverages Without Harming Your Teeth?
First, it’s a good idea to drink fewer carbonated beverages overall, but that doesn’t mean you have to give them up completely. Here are some tips for counteracting their negative effects:
- Get regular checkups – Regular cleanings are very beneficial, but checkups are also a way to make sure your teeth are closely monitored. A dentist will recommend preventive measures as necessary and catch any cavities you may have when they’re small and easy to fix.
- Chew sugar-free gum – Chewing sugar-free gum neutralizes acids and reduces your risk of cavities because it stimulates salivary flow. It’s also a convenient, on-the-go way to take care of your teeth when you can’t brush and floss.
- Swish with plain water – If you don’t have sugar-free gum, try rinsing with plain water several times to wash away the acids in your mouth before they can cause damage.
- Use topical fluoride – Most toothpastes have fluoride, but since it’s rinsed away right after brushing, swishing with a fluoride mouthwash is a great way to strengthen your enamel and prevent decay.
Many people love carbonated beverages and don’t want to give them up. With these tips and tricks, you don’t have to!
About the Author
Dr. Rick E. Martin is a general, cosmetic and restorative dentist in Arvada who knows that the impact of his patients’ daily habits really adds up over time. Always focused on prevention, he likes to educate patients about the effects of things like carbonated beverages on their oral health and how they can lessen the impact. If you have any questions, he can be reached via his website or at (303) 463-8570.