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Soda consumption has been linked to a number of health issues including obesity, diabetes and osteoporosis and it is no secret that soda can cause tooth decay. Soda consumption has increased throughout the past decade and is currently one of the leading causes of tooth decay. There are however things that can be done to reduce or prevent tooth decay. Drinking soda occasionally in moderation is not likely to cause an issue but drinking a large of amount of soda regularly can lead to problems.
What Soda Does To Teeth
When you drink soda, the sugar in it combines with bacteria that is located in the mouth. This causes an acid to form which attacks the teeth. Diet soda contains acid on its own and can cause even more damage to teeth. Every time you take a sip of soda, the acid that forms attacks you mouth for about twenty minutes, weakening the enamel that coats the teeth. Young children and teenagers tend to be more susceptible to tooth decay as their enamel is not yet fully developed. By limiting your intake of soda and other sugary drinks, as well as brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day, you can reduce your risk of cavities and other problems. It is also important to regularly visit a dentist for cleanings and to deal with any issues that may arise.
Cavities and Erosion
The two main dental related effects of drinking soda are cavities and erosion. The acids attack the enamel and decrease the hardness. The next layer of the tooth is dentin, and soda can also damage dentin. The damage caused to the tooth enamel can increase the risk of cavities.
What To Drink Instead of Soda
One of the most important aspects of overall health is staying hydrated. Soda can actually cause dehydration as most sodas contain caffeine and sugar. Sports drinks are better for staying hydrated but they usually also have sugar that can cause cavities. Sports drinks, soda, and lemonade can also cause damage to the enamel on your teeth which can lead to faster tooth decay. To stay hydrated, you should consume water. Not only is it good for you, it will not damage your teeth like many other drinks can.
How To Prevent Tooth Damage
The best way to prevent damage to the teeth is to stop drinking soda altogether. If you are going to continue drinking soda it should be done in moderation. You should also consume the soft drink quickly, as the longer it takes to drink it, the more time it has to cause damage to the teeth. It is also a good idea to use a straw. A straw can help to keep the sugar from soda away from your teeth. You should also rinse your mouth with water after drinking soda as it can help to wash away acids and sugars to keep them from attacking your teeth.
You should avoid drinking soda before bedtime as the sugar and acid will have an opportunity to attack your teeth all night. While it may seem like a good idea to brush your teeth right after having a soda, you should actually wait thirty to sixty minutes. The friction from brushing could potentially cause more harm as the teeth are vulnerable from the sugar and acid attacking them.
Soda is not the best choice when it comes to overall health. If you do choose to consume soda, it is important that it is consumed in moderation and that your dental health is protected in the process.
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