What Soda Can Do to Your Smile
Learn about the dangers of soda from you Columbia dentist.
Your soda habit could be damaging your smile. Dr. Kyle Garlitz, your Columbia, SC dentist at Garlitz Dentistry, explains how soda affects your teeth.
Drinking sugary sodas increases your cavity risk
Sugar, whether it's natural sugar or high fructose corn syrup, helps make your favorite soda taste good. Unfortunately, sugar is bad news for your teeth. It interacts with the bacteria in your mouth to create acids that attack your tooth enamel. If the acids create breaks in your enamel, tooth decay can occur.
Sugar isn't the only problem
Acids aren't just created by the combination of sugar and bacteria. They're also added to sodas to add flavor. Every time, you drink soda, your teeth are exposed to these acids. Both regular and diet sodas contain a variety of acids, including citric, phosphoric and carbonic acids.
All-day sipping increases your risk of cavities
If you constantly take sips from a soda during the day, your cavity risk increases. The longer your mouth is exposed to acids and sugars, the higher the tooth decay risk. If you can't give up soda, consider drinking the beverage only with meals to decrease your exposure to sugars and acids.
Change your habits
Reducing your soda intake, or even giving up soda, are good ways to prevent cavities. Even if you don't stop drinking soda, alternating soda with water or replacing your favorite with root beer, which contains less acid than other sodas, can help.
Some people decrease their exposure to sugars and acids by using straws when they drink soda or other sugary drinks. When you use a straw, much of the beverage bypasses your teeth and is deposited farther back in your mouth. Straws can also reduce staining caused by soda.
Wait to brush your teeth
Brushing your teeth as soon as you drink a soda may seem to be a good way to prevent tooth decay but it can actually boost your cavity risk. Brushing immediately after you finish your soda spreads the acids throughout your mouth rather than removes them. It's a good idea to delay brushing until about an hour after you've finished your soda.
Regular dental visits are particularly important if you're a soda drinker. Call Dr. Garlitz, your Columbia, SC dentist at Garlitz Dentistry, at (803) 736-8606 to schedule an appointment.