We all know that soft drinks containing sugar can be detrimental for your health. Apart from increasing our chances of developing metabolical diseases, such as diabetes, they are also capable of affecting our teeth. A team of researchers from the University of Melbourne found out that sugar-free soft drinks cause tooth decay.
This entails one mind-blowing fact: that there is no significant difference between sugary and sugar-free soft drinks in terms of teeth health. The team of Australian scientists analyzed samples taken from almost 23 types of beverages. Among these were sugary soft drinks, sugar-free soft drinks and even sports drinks.
Doctor Eric Reynolds, the one who is at the helm of the research project said that although the beverages may be accompanied by labels reading “sugar-free” or “tooth-friendly”, the drinks are anything but harmless. In fact, in terms of tooth decay, the team has determined that there is no major difference between the three types of drinks.
Each of the drinks, be it sugary or sugar-free, contain a high quantity of additives that alter the acidity inside our mouths. Moreover, those drinks that are known to contain low pH levels are even more damaging to our teeth’s enamel, the protective layer that coats each tooth.
Reynolds commented on the issue by saying that altering your diet, by tinkering with sugar levels, means absolutely nothing if you fancy soft drinks. Meaning that both types of drinks can damage your teeth in the same way. The mixture of additives, found inside popular soft drinks, is capable of triggering dental erosion or acid erosion.
Dental erosion is defined as being an irreversible wear of the tooth’s structure. As the name would suggest is, this erosion occurs when the enamel coating is submitted to drinks that are acidic. If the condition remains unchecked, the erosion itself could burrow its way through the enamel layer, ultimately reaching the dentin.
Additional research have uncovered that food or drinks with a pH factor between 5.0 and 5.7 can cause the appearance of tooth decay. One of the most common symptom of acidic erosion is the teeth’s coloration.
The good doctors have provided us with some useful tips, in order to prevent the onset of acidic erosion. The first thing we have to do is to avoid sweet or acidic foods. After a meal, we should consider rinsing and cleaning our teeth with a soft toothbrush. Drinking milk also helps against acidic erosion. And last, but not least, if symptoms do occur, it would be best to consult a dentist before trying anything else.