Health Matters: Soda and Energy drinks
Frank R. LaMar, D.D.S.
Many people do not recognize the sugar content in carbonated soda, sports drinks, and juices. These drinks create a change in your mouth that lowers PH. This makes your mouth very acidic, taking approximately 20-30 minutes for the PH in your mouth to neutralize again. For every sip of soda or sports drink that you take, it is important to understand that it is going to take a half hour for the PH to neutralize. In that time, the enamel is compromised. It can almost be etched by the acid.
We call some folks “soda swishers,” known to have a soda nearby their desk. This soda usually lasts them the whole day—taking little sips of soda at any given time. However, every intake, whether it’s one sip or the whole can, is the same insult, and creates the same acidic environment.
There are some individuals in this category, whose mouths are acidic from morning until night, demineralizing its etching. This is really how the decay process starts. We see children in their teens and some into their 20’s that habitually consume sports drinks, energy drinks, and sodas. Their teeth, at a very early age, become compromised. It can be startling. Unfortunately, enamel that you lose early on, can never be restored. Due to soda and energy drinks, these folks are dealing with dental problems that they would never have had to deal with.
Because of fluoride, most children of today don’t have cavities. We do see a segment of the population because of habitual drinking of carbonated sodas and drinks. These habits cause significant dental problems. Often, these dental problems stay with an individual for life.