Carbonated Drinks and Acid Erosion

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photograph of woman enjoying carbonated drinkPeople are becoming more and more health-conscious. Now more than ever before, we are keenly aware of the things we consume. Those who are eliminating sugar from their diets have found a new obsession in carbonated water drinks, such as LaCroix. This best-selling sparkling beverage is calorie free, fizzy, and fruity. It is certainly friendlier to your waistline, but what about your teeth? These soda alternatives can actually cause significant damage to your enamel, leading to erosion. Your Lone Tree dentist at Metropolitan Dental Care can offer some tips and tricks for avoiding tooth erosion for a healthier smile.

It’s Sugar-free. Why is it bad?

In the case of sugarless drinks like LaCroix, it’s not the sugar content that can damage your teeth; it is the acid. To create that addicting fizz found in these drinks, the water is pumped full of carbon dioxide. While this generates an irresistible, refreshing, zesty bite, it also adds a tremendous amount of acidity. This acid can play a significant role in dissolving your tooth enamel. When the strong outer layer of your tooth is compromised, it becomes vulnerable to decay. Therefore, when seeking out healthy drinks, there is more to consider than simply sugar content.

Indulge in Moderation

When we find something that works with our new lifestyle, we tend to go overboard. Many people drink these carbonated beverages throughout the day. Some even replace pure water with can after can after can of sparkling water. It is okay to indulge in these beverages every once in a while. Just be sure you aren’t drinking them all day long or over long periods of time. Practice moderation, and keep your teeth healthy!

Use a Straw

When drinking carbonated beverages, use a straw. This will help keep the acidic drink away from your enamel as much as possible. If you are in the habit of swishing your beverages before swallowing them, break this habit at all costs. It is one of the most damaging things you can do to your teeth.

Follow Up with Pure Water

After finishing a carbonated drink, try swishing with pure water to wash away the acid. If possible, make sure the water is fluoridated. This will help protect your enamel from erosion and prevent cavities.

Drink Water before Bedtime

Although it may be tempting, you should never drink carbonated beverages before you go to bed. The liquid can pool in your mouth and coat your teeth with acid. Rather, you should drink fluoridated water before bedtime.

Use Fluoride

Today’s dental products include higher concentrations of fluoride. This is beneficial for your oral health. When shopping for a toothpaste or a mouthwash, be sure it contains fluoride, and be sure it has the American Dental Association’s Seal of Approval. Try to avoid whitening toothpastes, or limit your use to two to three times per week. Most whitening pastes are abrasive, and can damage vulnerable enamel.

Additionally, consider professional fluoride treatments when you attend routine dental cleanings. A short, simple procedure can effectively remineralize your tooth enamel, making it resilient to decay. Your dentist may also provide you with a prescription-strength fluoride toothpaste if you are susceptible to cavities.

Learn More about Tooth Erosion

If your diet consists of large amounts of acidic drinks, consider changing your habits to improve your oral health. If you are experiencing tooth erosion or sensitivity, schedule an appointment at Metro Dental Care with your Lone Tree dentist. We can help you address the issue and prevent further problems from occurring. Contact us online or by calling (303) 534-2626.