Harmful Effects of Soda on Teeth
Sugary snacks and beverages are not good for the teeth. They can lead to decay if the teeth are not cleaned thoroughly. Many of the characteristics of soda, in particular, make it harmful to expose the teeth to these sugary drinks. Dr. Darren K. Dickson, your DDS serving Plano TX, can provide more information about how to keep your teeth clean and healthy.
The Dangers of Sugary Beverages
Sugar of any kind is dangerous for the teeth. When you drink sugary beverages or eat sugary foods, sugar can collect on the surfaces of the teeth. Bacteria feed off sugar, so a buildup of sugar in the mouth leads to rapid growth of bacteria, as well. Bacteria eat the sugar and leave behind acidic byproducts. These byproducts build up into a white, sticky substance called plaque. Plaque in turn hardens into tartar.
Plaque and tartar, due to their acidic content, can erode tooth enamel. This erosion eventually develops into decay. Regular brushing and flossing at home, as well as regular visits to the dentist, can help reduce the buildup of plaque and tartar on your teeth.
Additional Dangers of Soda
Soda, unlike many other sugary beverages, is naturally acidic because it often contains phosphoric acid or citric acid. Diet soda, although it does not contain sugar, is still bad for the teeth because of its acidic nature. Soda, then, is even more likely to erode enamel than other sugary drinks. This damage does not require sugar to build up on the teeth because the enamel is exposed to the acidic content of the soda simply through the act of drinking it.
Your dentist will probably advocate a significant reduction in soda consumption, especially for children. Soda has no nutritional value, and is often cited as a major contributor to obesity, so there are advantages to eliminating soda from the diet, aside from protecting your teeth. If you or your children drink a large amount of soda, consider reducing your intake to help extend the life of your teeth.